Are you sometimes finding your students off task or simply "on cloud 9"? We often think this happens because a student is not interested in completing assigned work or "doesn't care about school". The day I realized that this was incorrect, I changed my way of thinking drastically!
Did you know that kids sometimes just need a break? Even as adults, we often find ourselves getting antsy after working on a specific task for a long period of time. We will get up and take break by doing simple things like making a cup of coffee or emptying the dishwasher. Well, just like adults, children need breaks too!
In my classroom, I use brain breaks.
My students LOVE them!
Brain breaks are simply quick and easy activities that get us up out of our seat for just 2-3 minutes. I've been using brain breaks for years now and I adore them because they really help students refresh their attentions spans and move their bodies a little in order to find their better sitting positions (kids tend to 'slouch' after sitting too long).
I usually do these breaks every 20-30 minutes, depending on what we are working on. I just announce to my students that we will be taking a brain break and they know exactly what this means. It does NOT mean that they can get up and start chatting with their neighbor. I have them 'trained' early in the year to get up and wait for instructions. I then tell them what activity we will do and we do it without causing commotion. The rule is simple. If the group of students in the classroom next door is aware that we are doing a brain break, it's because we were too loud! The reason I am so strict with these brain breaks is because I want my students to be in control of their actions. This will help them be more able to sit down and get right back to work once we are finished our break ;)
Over the years, I've come up with different activities that we can do during brain breaks. I decided to make myself some cards with every activity typed onto them.
Look what I made!
|There is a FREEBIE in the preview file!|
|This pack includes 52 brain break cards and an EDITABLE version too!|
Now, I have a cute little deck of cards that I keep on my desk :)
When we are in need of a break, I turn my pack over, fan them out like a deck of cards, and ask a student to pick a card (just like a magic trick). My kiddies love having their turn to pick a card!
What do you do to keep your students on task? Leave me a comment and I will choose one person who will win my new Move & Groove - Brain Breaks For Your Classroom Pack!
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