Show and Tell: What's New?

Now that the first quarter is over (!), I am finally "in the groove" with my 6th graders and am excited to join Stephanie for this swell linky to share some new things in/about my classroom!

One new thing I have been trying is Whole Brain Teaching.  Now I am no expert and am not implementing it to the "T", but I am using the class attention signals and the hand signals for various concepts which have been working wonders all by themselves!
The class attention signals work by saying "Class" to which the students respond "Yes".  You can vary it by saying "Super Class" to which the students respond "Super Yes".  I may have to repeat some sort of "Class" 2 or 3 times and then I say "Hands and Eyes" to which the students fold their hands and look at me.  This has been amazing!!
Then, I began to look at other signals like the folded hands to indicate compare and the bumping fists together to indicate contrast.  As we really get the hang of it, signals could replace words which amps up the attention factor tremendously.
I learned A LOT, just by watching this video:

Another part of the Whole Brain Teaching is "The Super Improver Wall".  This is where kids can visually track progress and move up in the ranks as they progress through the year.  My students are really enjoying it and coming up with privileges for each rank.

My Super Improver Wall is one of the awesome new things I am trying this year to put the emphasis on progress, not perfection!

Each student has to earn 10 improvements before they can move up a level.  They all want to be living legends!  :)

In my county, we must use the Springboard textbook.  I like the book overall, but it doesn't leave much room for fun.  So I have to keep the fun short and connected.  One way I have decided to do this is with picture books on video!

I plan to use this spooky story as a lead in to talk about theme in our text.  :)

Last, but not least, I am going to be starting a new blog series about engagement.  Now that the "honeymoon" is over, it's time to reach into the 'ol bag of tricks to ensure my students are with me!  Each Monday, beginning October 24th, I'll be sharing some of my best "tricks".  :)  I hope you'll join me!

Engagement in the Classroom Blog Series begins October 24th!

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. I've been implementing WBT little by little over the past several years. Some of things that I've tried, I just can't get into. I'll be interested to see how the Super Improvers wall goes for you! I just couldn't fet into it... epic fail for me! I was so disappointed, but Class-Yes and Teach-OK is the bomb! Have you investigated the WBT teaching website yet? There are some TERRIFIC resources posted there for FREE.

    Looking forward to your new engagement series!


  2. I would love some details about how you use your Super Improver Wall. It sounds like a great idea! Thanks for linking up!

    Forever in Fifth Grade

  3. I really like using Whole Brain Teaching techniques in my second grade classroom as well. I have not implemented the Super Improver wall yet though. I agree with Angela above, there is a lot of resources online for free. Happy teaching!


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