A long winter, a concentration on academics related to standardized test, and challenging assignments and collaboration have left my team of energetic fourth graders ready for a renewed focus on team.
They're not the fourth graders that entered the room last fall as they've all made a leap in maturity, interests, and needs--it's time to regroup, talk, and set the path for the months ahead.
Food used to be a good way to do that. I'd make pancakes or crepes for the class and we'd have a wonderful class breakfast to warm everyone up, but now we have considerable food restrictions, so what will be a good way to bring the team together, and focus on our class strengths, needs, and growth?
I'll start with a short survey, a chance for every child to share their personal thoughts about our class team and needs. Then we'll have a class meeting, and make some plans. One idea is a class birthday party since we've missed a few birthdays recently, and we need to recognize the summer birthdays. I'm sure the children will come up with some other wonderful ideas.
It's important to stop now and then and think about team as that's the structure that makes optimal learning possible.