At the beginning of the year, we teach students many school behaviors around entering the classroom, walking in the hallway, lining up, transitions, recess, the lunchroom, and more. We know that teaching students expected behaviors and creating routines will make these tasks automatic and free up cognitive processing space for both teachers and students. Instead of expending energy figuring out what is expected of them, they will already know and can instead use that energy for learning!
Effective teachers take the time to explain the reasons behind particular routines and involve students in creating and practicing them. When students know why they are doing something and are involved in the process, they are more likely to do the behaviors outlined.
One of the first behaviors we teach to start the year off is how to gather together. We gather together for lessons and read-alouds throughout the day so that we can learn, listen, and share together. And, practicing the behavior of coming to the gathering area can reduce the time it takes, thus saving more time for instruction.
Curious how we teach students to gather together? Download and review the lesson plan. Then, try it yourself!