Aren’t you tired of lecturing to your high school and middle school students about your expectations and reading the ground rules for your class or program? Year after year we review how you expect your students to behave, and may sometimes feel like the information goes in one ear and out the other. Avoid the boredom and monotony of lecturing about expectations of the class or program. Honestly, that way never really worked for me in engaging my students!
There are several activities that I am really excited to share with you! These activities have really worked for me to engage my students and have them take ownership in class and group rules and expectations. These activities will help them express their own needs from the program or class and identify expectations. Here are a few activities that I’ve done with my own students in the classroom and the results couldn’t have worked better. Not only were my students engaged, but they were also understanding of how to collaboratively and independently work towards a goal.
These three hands on activities can be used in your classroom to help your teens collaborate efficiently and effectively:
- The Carousel Method
Create four questions and write them all down separately on four pieces of paper that you then hang up around the room. Then, assign or randomize students into four groups. As your students move around the room, have each group write down an answer for each question and continue the process until there are four answers on each paper.
2. The Mock Classroom
Have your students become facilitators for a day. Break your classroom into groups and have them create their own rules on how they want a certain lesson plans will go. This will allow them to recognize what they want to see in a classroom and see how they can improve engagement for not only themselves but for their peers as well.
3. The Song/Rap Game
Assign or randomize your students into groups and have them create a song or rap about the rules they expect or want to see in the classroom or program. Of course, you can create limits to what they can or cannot include. (Make it a PG) Let them have fun and explore their creative side! This team-building activity will make the first day more fun and set a great mood for the rest of the semester.
All three of these activities have helped really set the tone for the year and have allowed the students to take ownership of their learning and behaviors.
I would love to hear about activities you have done to engage your students in setting ground rules and expectations. Please share it in the comments below!
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