Episode 02: Classroom management tips for allowing students work at their own pace through a weekly checklist. Focus topic: Timers
As the students transition into taking ownership of their learning, the teacher and the students have to be aware of how to manage time. The last thing that we want to happen in the blended learning classroom is procrastination. One of the techniques that work well with time management is the deployment of student timers along with the Phase Two checklist. In today's video and blog post, I am going to share out my favorite timers as well as a few websites that will help with time management.
Side Note: I have used and demonstrated the following timers in the K-12 classrooms. Today's classroom video showcases a 1st grade classroom using one of the techniques. The photos will show sample Middle and High School classrooms using the same tools.
The next day, we taught the students how to use kitchen timers. The students were excited; they could not wait to start tracking time. Twenty minutes into the selfed paced classroom, the teacher and myself were ready to toss the timers out the window. That was too much dinning and chirping all class period long.
Side Note: Kitchen timers are cheap and make good timers. I would recommend finding some that don't ding so loud.
Side Note: The trouble with Sand Timers is the fact the students can quickly flip the sand back and forth. They can get knocked over. Most importantly, now that the timers don't make noise the students while reading will not know that their time has expired.
However, after a certain amount of time, the students need to keep working through the checklist and the teacher needs to see all of the students throughout the class period. Therefore, this timer, becomes the signal and cue to the teacher to wrap up the lesson and move to the next group of students. The Cube timers are easy, quick and provide a sense of time when flipped.
Side Note: I found two sets of cube timers on Amazon. The cube timers were meant for circuit workouts but they work just fine in the blended learning mini-lesson.
The Gym Boss not only counts down a timer with a transition time allotment but it also vibrates. The vibration helps to signal that time is up, and it is time to move to the next activity.
Side Note: I highly recommend the Gym Boss for every student, but they are pricey. Therefore, to start, give the gym boss to those students that have a hard time transitioning.
Side Note: This timer is expensive. Therefore, I recommend only buying four timers, one at each learning studio. Then over time, pick up a few more so students can have their soft glow timer.
Of course there are only timers that you can use to help showcase elapsed time. My only suggestion is that the eventually, the interactive pannel should be used by the students as part of thier checklist items. To get started though, it is okay to display the timer.
Below are a list of my favorite count down timers.
Marcia Kish - Blended and Personalized Learning coach that designed the Three Phases of Blended Learning