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Showing posts with label community building. Show all posts
Showing posts with label community building. Show all posts

Back to School Success Strategies Part 2: Build Relationships

It's getting closer to that time again. 

No matter where you are in your summer vacation, getting back is in your future. This series of posts is designed to make that return a bit smoother for you. 

This is a series of 5 posts designed to make the return smooth and successful. This post has some ideas that will help you build relationships.

Today is Part 2 in a five part series about returning to school successfully.

Build Relationships

As teachers, we all know that building relationships is as important as the teaching itself! After all, if they don't know you care, they won't learn from you!


Morning Meetings are a great way to build relationships with students, and help them build relationships with each other! Interesting topics of discussion are great for getting them to develop oral language as well as building those bonds. 

It's also a good idea to find times to connect on a more personal level. It can be a challenge to find one-on-one time with them, but it's worth the effort! If the children are old enough, it's fun to let them write in a journal, which they'll pass in. They love when you write back a personal note! This can be build into the morning routine, or perhaps a part of writing or literacy time.

Here are some resources and ideas to help build relationships and connections: 

This is a series of 5 posts designed to make the return smooth and successful. This post has some ideas that will help you build relationships.

These games can be easily used in the classroom, and are perfect for Morning Meeting! Plus, many of these games can be adapted to topics of learning! 60 Team Building Games and Activities

This is a series of 5 postsdesigned to make the return smooth and successful. This post has some ideas that will help you build relationships.

If you're not familiar with Boom Cards, it's time you hopped on this bandwagon! Why? They can be used on any device, since all you need to do is send a link. You can send the link through any platform! 

This set of Boom Cards lets the children answer questions about themselves, helping them get to know themselves a little better, and helping the teacher get to know them as well! (Don't tell them it's a great way to practice reading and writing skills, and the teacher can easily make assessments of their writing skills!) 

These can be done through distance learning, or in the classroom. It might be fun to bring this resource back a few times a year in order to see the growth and change the children are experiencing: Who Am I: Get to Know Your Students Boom Cards
This is a series of 5 posts designed to make the return smooth and successful. This post has some ideas that will help you build relationships.

I don't know if it's possible for children in classrooms to play board games while staying socially distant, but this game could be sent home to be shared with families. The cards themselves make great questions for discussion, during Morning Meeting or reading discussions! Get to Know You Board Game

I'm sure you have more ways to build relationships with students than I've listed here. Feel free to share your ideas in the comments below!

Be sure to read the other four parts of these Back to School Success Strategies!

This is a series of 5 posts designed to make the return smooth and successful. This post has some ideas that will help you establish routines.
 
This is a series of 5 posts designed to make the return smooth and successful. This post has some ideas that will help you review and strengthen known skills.
  
This is a series of 5 posts designed to make the return smooth and successful. This post has some ideas that will help you watch out for their health.
 
 
 This is a series of 5 posts designed to make the return smooth and successful. This post has some ideas that will help watch out for their emotional health.

I imagine you're thinking of more strategies for building relationships!

 I hope you'll share some of these in the comments below.

   
This is a series of 5 posts designed to make the return smooth and successful. This post has some ideas that will help you build relationships.





Space Balls: Build Community and Team Building as Well as Imagination and Concentration!

Space Balls: 

It sounds like something odd, but it really is as simple as can be!
 
Space Balls are balls that are made up of nothing but space!

Space Balls: Here's a quick game that children love, that develops team work, concentration, and imagination. Plus, it doesn't require any materials!

Space Balls is a great game for team building, but also works on focus, concentration, and imagination! It works well in morning meeting, or any time of day they need a break.

Space Balls: Here's a quick game that children love, that develops team work, concentration, and imagination. Plus, it doesn't require any materials!

To start, establish what a space ball actually is: a ball made of space! Since you can't see the ball, it's important to show the size, shape, and weight of the ball by the way you hold the ball. 

Space Balls: Here's a quick game that children love, that develops team work, concentration, and imagination. Plus, it doesn't require any materials!

Then, slowly pass the space ball around the circle. 
Students should watch to see that the ball maintains its size and shape. 

For many students, that's enough for the first time.

Later, or on another day, introduce a "new" space ball, and review the concept by passing the ball around the circle again. Make the new space ball somewhat different from the first one. (smaller, heavier, etc.)

When the ball completes the circle, it's a good time to break the group into groups of 2 or 3 to play catch with the space balls. (Have some fun passing out space balls to each small group! Encourage their creativity by asking what sort of ball they want, then slowly taking that ball out of your "box" for them to see!)

Another option is to toss the space ball to someone across the circle. (See photo at top.) In these cases, remind the children to show the size and shape of the ball, remembering to maintain the size and shape.

Space Balls: Here's a quick game that children love, that develops team work, concentration, and imagination. Plus, it doesn't require any materials!

On another day, introduce the idea of changing the space ball. Model squishing the space into a very small ball, or stretching it into a very large ball. The space can also become quite heavy (grunting is encouraged) or it can become quite light like a balloon. The students' hands and body language should always show the size, shape, and weight of the space ball, so their partner can follow. 

Space Balls: Here's a quick game that children love, that develops team work, concentration, and imagination. Plus, it doesn't require any materials!

Now it's time to let the children be creative: pass a space ball around the circle, letting children change the space ball any way they want to.  The students should be very clear in taking the space ball from the previous person, maintaining its shape, then showing the group how they are changing the space ball.

 I'll bet you (or your students) can think of more variations of "Space Balls!" 


Can you think of a way to include curriculum concepts?
Please share these variations in the comments!

You might even see them playing it at recess time!
 

Looking for some other team building games?  

 

Looking for something that can be used for socially distant or remote learning? 




 
Side note: the teacher in the photo above is my daughter playing space balls with her students at summer music camp! She has her own blog, Me vs Rent!
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