You know those CRAZY first 5 minutes of your class when it seems like all of your kids are running around and yelling that they don’t have a pencil. When kids coming up to your desk telling you they were absent. And the school secretary is calling you and asking why you haven’t submitted your roll yet. These super simple warm-ups are the key.
When I taught high school, I don’t remember there being this much chaos in these first 5 minutes. I feel like I just put up my warm up and put my feet up. Okay, probably not. But middle school is really a whole new ballgame.
I have had to establish and reteach opening procedures over and over and OVER again. It doesn’t help that the school that I currently teach at doesn’t have bells between the period because it is a K-8 school.
There are a few rules that I have posted right next to my desk so that I can just point while I am taking role.
- Get out your notebook, planner, folder and pencil and start your warm up.
- Yes you can have a pencil. I buy them just for you!
- Come see me about your grade during the break.
- Your grade is important and you deserve my full attention.
- If you are finished early, please sit quietly so everyone else can continue to work.
How To Use a Super Simple Warm-Up
On Tuesday-Friday, we do a short 5-minute warm-up. I keep the warm-ups in a binder located by my document camera. I use this template every week. (I usually hand write them, but I included this one as a bonus in my experimental design bundle for middle school.)
The first page is for the questions and the second page is for the answers. The warm-up for each day goes into a box and I zoom into that box with the document camera so that they can’t see the other days. They have roughly minutes to answer the questions on their own sheet of paper, which is just a sheet of paper that they fold into 4’s.
Grading the Warm-Up (It’s so easy!)
When the 5 minutes are up, I simply flip to the next page to reveal the answers. The students self-grade their own. The following week, we repeat the process on the back side. At the end of 2 weeks, they total up their points and pass it in. I simply enter their score.
What about Monday?
Monday used to be my vocab day, but I started feeling like the way I was teaching vocabulary wasn’t really effective. I haven’t come up with a solution that I really love, so if you have, please post a comment below.
In this new year, my plan is to do a quote a week. I will post the quote on the board and have the students respond to it using a google form. We will spend about 5 minutes discussing the quote. I think it will be a good way to start off the week on a positive note.
Do you want the free template?
Head over to my Teachers Pay Teachers store and pick it up. It is one of my forever freebies. If you like it, please rate it. It is extremely helpful!
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