Monday, September 5, 2016

Ideas For Getting Your Students' Attention

"Buzz Feed" had a fun post about how to get students' attention in class and I wanted to tell you about ways I get my students' attention.

I do the power teaching idea of using "Class Class" with the kids replying "Yes, Yes" but I have them sing it. I vary the way I sing it and they have to copy. Sometimes when they forcefully sing it back to me, I remind them to sound like I sound and we practice. Read more about power teaching (also called whole brain teaching) here.

I use the traditional ch ch sounds in a pattern, such as quarter, eighth-eighth, quarter, quarter. They respond back to me in the same pattern. I also sometimes clap patterns and have them respond.

At times, I use a gong or a little bell to signal quiet. It is good to vary what you do to keep them listening.

Since students start tuning out things when you do the same thing for too long, I have added a new one this year. Every year, I do a new theme in my classroom. This year, I am having fun doing a pirate theme. The librarian and I are both doing this theme. We sing, "Yo ho, yo ho" and they sing back, "A musical life for me". In library, they sing back "A reader's life for me". The kids love it and it is new and fun so it really works.

I plan to do it in solfa (solfege) as well and I think they will love that too. Check out my pirate theme here.

A teacher in my school says, "Freeze" and the kids say, "hands on knees". That one surprised me when they first did that after I said, "freeze".

I love some of the options in the "Buzz Feed" article. My favorites are:

Teachers says, "Shark Bait Students". Students say, "Boo ya ya" (Finding Nemo)
Teacher says. "Winner winner". Students say, "Chicken dinner".

Check out more fun ways to get students' attention on buzz feed here.

Do you have any fun ways to get your students' attention?