Five Ways to Develop a Warm and Accepting Classroom Community

Classroom Community starts with the classroom teacher. This post includes five ideas to help you build a positive classroom community all year long. Freebie included.

As students grow up in our classrooms, one of the most important duties we have as teachers and citizens is to help our students develop positive character traits to become contributing members of society. They need to know right and wrong, and although teachers do not bear full responsibility for how a student behaves toward others, it is an important role that we play in this process.

Today, I'd like to share five tips you can use to help your students learn to include others, to treat others with respect and dignity, and to develop a positive self esteem.

Use Literature for Teaching Themes

Classroom Community starts with the classroom teacher. This post includes five ideas to help you build a positive classroom community all year long. These titles may help you work in themes of kindness, community, diversity, and goal setting.
No matter the grade you teach, great literature can ALWAYS support you in your teaching. We can model so many skills with literature, and as we do that, we model comprehension, thinking skills, listening skills, and how to have positive dialogue with others. Using quality literature to spark conversation leads to deeper thinking. The more kids discuss their reading and concepts, the better. High level questioning can do wonders. If you'd like a go-to author for starters, I highly recommend that you look at Julia Cook's books. You can visit her website [here]

Write, Write, Write

Writing can be VERY therapeutic. One of my friends who has been a counselor for years told me that that's her go-to advice for many of her clients. She tells clients to get a journal, share how they are feeling in their entries, and that they'll find a sense of calm and ease. This may be very helpful for our kids (especially in the upper elementary grades) when conflicts arise or when children have experienced challenges during and outside of school.

Quote It

Classroom Community starts with the classroom teacher. This post includes five ideas to help you build a positive classroom community all year long. Freebie included.Our kids need to hear positive messages, and sharing quotes from positive people, great authors, and leaders in our country. Today, we celebrate the life of Martin Luther King Jr. This quote came through my Facebook feed (Chesepeake Reading Association). I just loved it. The quote shared with this image was, "Teach Content of Character through your Words and Actions." We can use quotes to model character traits and have our students analyze their reading for quotes that demonstrate character. Great activity idea, huh? Quotes are wonderful for morning messages and class meetings too.

Teamwork Matters

At the beginning of the year, most teachers spend the first few weeks getting to know their students and work to build community. We encourage friendships, playing together, respect, and classroom routines. In today's workplace, it is more important than ever that we work together as a team. There is great value in pulling out the best in each teammate and recognizing his/her strengths. 

In my building, we work as Professional Learning Communities using the teaching/learning cycle. This applies to our kids too. We take them further if we can identify each child's strengths and use them to work on the "grows". One teaching option that is great for teamwork is Project Based Learning. PBL projects start with a problem. They are typically content driven and include research AND teamwork.

Build a positive classroom community any time of year with this paper bag book focused on learning about each other. Check out this post for more great kindness growing tips.I have always enjoyed doing projects with my students, and although they were not always PBL projects, they were fun for the kids and included cross curricular skills (writing, research, reading, and science/social studies content). This resource will require some classroom research, but the intent with it is to help teachers build an inclusive, supportive, respectful, and KIND classroom. Get your students talking! Help them learn each other. We can't get enough of positive traits, can we? We owe it to EACH of our students to value them and ensure that they are treated fairly. To check out this resource, click HERE or the image to the left. With the project, the kids will:

-Write about themselves.
-Interview a classmate to learn about them.
-Describe what makes their classroom special.
-Sort Friendship Builders and Breakers
-Identify how we benefit from friendships with all types of people, and
-Set goals for how they can practice being a friend to others. 

The complete book is just eight pages, so it won't take long to construct, but hopefully, it will give your kids time to think about how important their actions are.

Encourage Friendships

Finally, as the leader in our classrooms, we need to encourage our kids' friendships. I loved this DIY Kindness Project. The directions look pretty easy. Check out the video and see if it works for you.

Another Option:

Classroom Kindness ChallengeIf you aren't into DIY, you could grab this print/use resource from Blair Turner. I love both options. Blair's calendar is for 180 days, so you can get use from it...all...year...long. For busy teachers, it's well worth the $4.00 price. HERE is the link to the resource, or you can click the image to the right.

I hope these tips and resources help you in your teaching journey, and more importantly, I hope that your students grow reading skills as well as positive friendships, character traits that lead to being citizens in our communities, and classrooms that foster positivity for each and every child.

Other Posts You Might Like:

Classroom Community starts with the classroom teacher. This post includes five ideas to help you build a positive classroom community all year long. Freebie included.



Free Resource Focused on Growth and Development

No comments

Post a Comment

Thanks for visiting my blog today. I love to hear from my readers, so if something from my post speaks to you, please let me know. Feel free to share what has worked well for you or anything else on your mind.