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Help With General Routines In F2


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Hi,

This is now my fourth year working in F2 and the job seems to be getting harder each year. It's not the fact of the intense planning or assessment, they are not the main problem. I have a class of 30. I find that I spend nearly 35 minutes at the end of the day giving out reading folders, book bags, lunch boxes, drinks, pictures, changing the children's shoes etc etc. Also, in the morning the children seem to come into the classroom high as kites and parents stop me at the door so there is actually nobody in the classroom to calm them down straight away.

I encourage the children to be independent and put their reading books, drinks and lunch boxes away. Then I ask them to find their name and put them under a heading, dinners or sandwiches. Once they have done that they go and do a towards handwriting activity.

By the time they have all done this all of the children are finally in the classroom and just about settled but I am exhauseted!!! Does everyone feel like this?

I even play calm music before the children come into the classroom so I'm calm but it's like the calm before the storm. Don't get me wrong they are calm once we are all together and sat on the carpet but it's just such a hectic start to the day.

 

Does anyone have any ideas for me? Especially for the end of the day. It would be most appreciated.

 

Thank you sooooooooooooo much.

Tired Boogie :o

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Hi boogie, 35 minutes does seem rather excessive although I can understand why it takes so long. think you need to encourage the children to do as much as they can themselves and to cut the time considerably. When it is the parents hassling them, they will soon learn to speed up!

 

Your morning routine sounds good but if you are on your own at this time you really havent got time to talk to the parents. It sounds as if your children leave their parents at the door, would it help if they came in and then the children are not alone?

 

Is there no way you can negotiate some support for the arriving and leaving times? I found this helped tremendously.

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I used to have the problem of giving out folders,lunch boxes,etc until I found the same Boogie. I then introduced reading folder baskets/boxes and a trolley for lunchboxes - As I have a small area which is the base for Rec and parents come in to the unit at hometime to collect chn, I found that the easiest and quickest hometime routine was for parents to collect their child's folders/lunchboxes/ letters on the way in at hometime (I have a couple of trolleys with the row of things to collect) , whilst the children have the job of putting their own in the correct place on entry to the unit...we line up folder boxes ready for them and have their names on the boxes along with a picture for their group so they can recognise their box. I encourage children to put their pictures straight in their folders if they want to take them home after they have shown them to the class and this saves time too. I have also found having 'magic carpet' places helps too - the children have a set place where they sit at registration/input times (obviously there are times when they can choose where to sit too) .When this idea was first suggested to me I thought they would never remember but it's amazing how quickly they do! I can carefully plan who to sit where and know where to look to assess certain children's participation,etc, who to separate and so on. In our setting, as the children put away their things they go straight to carpet places once they have found names and then we are ready to say hello officially before we go to play. I'm very lucky that I have a full time NN who can help but find that the children/parents have settled well with the routine. Sorry I've waffled but hope it helps! If you have got an IWB have you seen the interactive self-registration where chn can drag their name on to a lunchbox if on packed lunches or plate if on dinners? You have to put your class names in first but here's the link (select 'ready register') :

http://www.kented.org.uk/ngfl/games/index.htm

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We sent a letter out saying that now the children are more settled that we request that the parents leave the children at the classroom door in the mornings. The parents are able to leave message with a TA or write a note or speak to me at the end of the day. This has solved lots of the problems with parents hassling in the morning. Could you do something similar?

 

Pm, I have a box with all the children's book bags in it which I have by the door - the children find their own book bag to go home with which saves time handing out and is a good CI name finding activity. Re. giving out work, I sit them all in a circle and have 2-4 helpers to help give out work - rarely takes more than 5 mins. I do not change shoes??! Coats are in the cloakroom outside so I leave that one to the parents (although it does wind me up when the parents dress their child and then wonders when I say that they need to gain independence!!!)

 

Puzzles x

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Either me, my TA, or more recently a child laysthe book bags out on a table with the names showing. I send a group at a time to fetch and put on coats, return with drink bottles and lunch boxes, grab their book bag off the table and sit back down. I handout any letters when they are sitting on the carpet, or sometimes stand at the gate as I et children out and put a letter in their hand then. It takes about 10 minutes from start to finish. No real easy answer though, Im afraid.

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Our reception children have a similar morning routine to yours - register then towards hand-writing activity but our parents do come in.

 

For first term every parent is allowed in (first 10 mins or so) handwriting books are set up with the pattern/formation child needs to practise and parents copy this out each day. Teacher then marks at end of week and gives feedback to child & parent. We also put out other literacy/numeracy games that parents can share with thier child if they are keen.

 

From second term onwards children are encouraged to come in independently and we do have 2TAs, however interested parents continue to come in on a rota basis to support handwriting / reading etc - just for that first 20mins.

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Thank you everyone for your ideas. It is really kind of you all to offer your help. I think I will try a variety of those so that they suit my setting. I really am grateful for your input.

Kented is such a great website!

 

Boogie :D

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