The first concern of any classroom is to make sure that it is safe and orderly. To keep a safe and exciting environment, we start each session by establishing the expectations for the class. We call these the ABC’s of learning:
As ACTIVE LISTENERS we wait for the appropriate time to speak. We listen to the teacher and raise your hand when its your turn to speak.
LEARNING ACTION: Have children take their left hand and cup their ear and say ACTIVE LISTENING.
The next expectation is that students will give their “BEST EFFORT.” We must understand as leaders that all participants “best efforts” will look differently from each other. Best effort means that students are participating and doing THEIR best.
LEARNING ACTION: Have children take their left hand and make a swooping motion and say BEST EFFORT.
Our final expectation is that students would exercise “CAREFUL COMMUNICATION.” Our motto is “NO PUTDOWNS.” We explain that it is very important to use kind words and communication to each other and our teachers.
LEARNING ACTION: Have children place their left hand to their move and make a talking motion and say ACTIVE LISTENING.
To be successful with guidelines in your classroom you need to start each class by reminding them of your expectations. My wife, Dr. Bobbi Morehead, created these three guidelines in an easy ABC format to help kids and leaders remember.