What’s more important? Going over the same calendar and weather routine every single day (and boring kids half-to-death) OR changing things up and bringing something fresh and new to school each morning? Would you rather fill your day with monotonous routines or would you rather light up your students’ worlds with the best classroom on the planet? Bring enthusiasm and excitement into your classroom every day. Let’s make school the most exciting place in the world!
Think of all the things that captured your imagination growing up. What made you jump out of bed in the morning? What ideas or topics made your mind race with questions and your eyes go wide with wonder? Take a few seconds to reflect on your most memorable moments in learning and feel that same excitement again!
What was the feeling like when that curiosity first took hold? Now let’s make every day in the classroom feel that exact same way.
When school is a fun and exciting place and students are learning something new and challenging each day, they don’t ever want to miss a day. Keep the goal on inspiring passions and capturing imaginations and kids will hurry into class each morning to ask: “What are we learning today?” When students are this excited to learn, they monitor their own behavior and direct their own work because the sooner they understand what we’re learning today, the more equipped they will be to understand what we are learning tomorrow. It’s much bigger than a Fear of Missing Out for school because your classroom is a fun, rockin’ place — it’s a Fear of Missing Out on learning something new that might be awesome and cool and inspiring. Come to think of it — it’s not really fear at all. It’s love. Love for knowledge. Love for your classroom. That’s why they don’t want to miss out.
So how do we create this kind of classroom, where students fall in love and don’t want to leave when the bell rings at 3:00 PM? Find out in this week’s episode of the Punk Rock Preschool Podcast.
There’s no how-to guide on building a classroom around love and enthusiasm; some curricula, textbooks, college professors, etc. may claim they have the answer but that’s a sham. I don’t have the answer either.
If you want students to be excited, you have to be excited. You have to BELIEVE in what you’re teaching. If you don’t love the lesson that’s planned for you, plan your own! You deserve to teach what you love. You deserve to teach what makes you happy. By rewarding yourself and bringing your interests and passions into class, you are also rewarding your students. Your lessons will have a newfound energy as you share with your class the coolest, most important wisdom you know. Participation will jump through the roof, not just because of increased enthusiasm but you can always explain “The Why” of a lesson because you chose it! You must have had a great reason! Enthusiasm is contagious!
Before I decided to make school the most exciting place in the world, my classroom was not the fun place we eventually created. I was just starting out as a teacher and did not want to rock the boat too bad so I just went along with the assigned schedule and curriculum. It was miserable.
Here was a typical day before our classroom became “Punk Rock Preschool:”
- Morning Work
- Large Group Instruction
- Read Aloud
- Nap Time
Factor in bathroom breaks and this schedule was brutal. I’m exhausted and bored just writing that list. Imagine what it’s like for a student coming to school everyday knowing that this is what you have to look forward to. Trying to conform to this schedule, I couldn’t even find time for small groups, literacy centers, math instruction, or crafts — where was the time for enthusiasm?
Resources and People Mentioned in this Podcast:
- Chemical Reaction Videos
- Find your nearest Goodwill
- Petco “Pets in the Classroom” Grant
- Free Full Year Curriculum Plan
- BBC Planet Earth & Life
- Jungle Book Trailer
Show Notes (w/times):
- 3:25 – Mindset Shift
- 5:53 – Strategies
- 18:29 – Next Steps
- 21:36 – Major Takeaways
Thanks so much for joining us this week! Did you think of some important skills I missed? Would you mind sharing in the comments so all the great teachers can use it too!? Thank you!
If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of the post. Also, please leave an honest review for the Punk Rock Preschool Podcast on iTunes. Ratings and reviews are super helpful and greatly appreciated and I will read all of them! If you have any questions or want to learn more, head on over to punkrockpreschool.com! And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on iTunes to get automatic updates!Click Here