A community of learners can be established in any classroom. Here are some ideas for turning your classroom into a community of learners:
- Take time for student interaction. Student interaction and sharing enhances instructional time and prepares students to function more effectively as a body of learners. We must recognize the importance of these dynamics and find ways to celebrate student life.
- Spend time at the beginning of the year talking about guidelines students find in their homes. Draw parallels from the home as a learning environment to being a family of learners in the classroom.
- Celebrate the accomplishments that make a group cohesive. Recognize the work of cooperative groups, inform the class about its accomplishments over time, and inform students about the goals they’re attaining.
- Use a morning meeting to foster an atmosphere of trust and respect. A meeting in which students feel safe to take risks is necessary for learning. During these morning meetings, students and the teacher gather in a circle for 10 to 15 minutes and greet one another in a personal way, listen and respond to one another’s news, practice academic and social skills, and share appropriate news and announcements.
- Provide numerous opportunities for students to share their accomplishments with the class and the class to share their achievements with the larger school community. Use skits, plays, readers theater productions, library displays, bulletin boards, a class newspaper or newsletter, or other media to promote the efforts of the whole classroom.
Excerpted from The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Success as a Teacher © 2005 by Anthony D. Fredericks. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
To order this book visit Amazon’s web site or call 1-800-253-6476.