As I've been teaching for about 100 years, I've explored many different ways to manage behaviors.
These are the two things I've settled on lately:
The Scoreboard has been my savior for the last few years! It is my main tool for management in the classroom. The best part? It's simple to use! It's part of the Whole Brain Teaching strategies, and I absolutely love it! Basically, when the kids do something well, put a tally on the happy side. When something doesn't go well, put a tally on the sad side. If Happy beats Sad at the end of the day, the kids earn 5 minutes toward a privilege, such as extra recess, arts and crafts, or a dance party. Different teachers do different things with the scoreboard, but that's how I use it. It goes all day, every day!
Read more HERE to see how I use the Scoreboard and the Rules from Whole Brain Teaching in my classroom. See more about Whole Brain Teaching HERE (Be sure to watch the videos. That's what hooked me in!)
I also use a Clip Chart. Mine has a sports theme, and uses beanie babies for incentive. Yep, there's not much more exciting than getting the privilege of having a beanie baby (or two, or more) live on your desk for the day. (There's also a beanie baby-less version...click the image!) Read more about that HERE.
Organizational Tip #1: Organization for base ten blocks! Aren't these caddies great? It's so easy for the kids to get the pieces they need. I used to keep them in one big tub, but all the little cubes would fall to the bottom, and it was tough for the kids to get the ones they needed! These are much easier! (Plus, these base ten blocks are made of foam... much quieter!)
If you're interested in these caddies, I found a link to some on Amazon. Just click the image!
Amazon calls them "Art Caddies", but classroom teachers know they're useful for many things other than just Art supplies!
Organizational Tip #2: Writing Folder Organization! Use 4 different colors, and have even amounts of folders for each color. There's never a question of where a folder would go, or where to put it away. After school, go through the red ones on Monday, yellow on Tuesday, green on Wednesday, and blue on Thursday. Then you get Friday off!
I use the drawers of the cart for different kinds of paper.
I put pre-stapled booklets, staplers, tape, and staple removers on an extra desk.
Organizational Tip #3: Letter guide/ number grid! I give every child one of these two sided cards that we use ALL THE TIME! They are good tools for math as well as handwriting. (That's the Handwriting Without Tears alphabet on the back.) They are great for covering work during a test. They make great bookmarks. They can help kids keep their place while reading. Seriously, these guys are out several times a day. Plus, if you laminate them, the kids can write on them with dry erase markers! The letter guide is copyrighted, so you'll have to get that through HWT, but you can download the color coded number grid freebie HERE!
Hope you appreciate these management and organizational tips!