Helping Kids Flourish in Kindergarten and Beyond
By now you have probably already heard the big news that today was moving day in Room 11! After 100 days of school it was definitely time to give our students a new group of table-mates and a new view of the classroom.
We began the day talking about why we were moving everyone and encouraging kids to find something new and exciting to share about their new spots.  We also talked about how Miss Harrington and I know lots about our students now: especially how they work really well with some friends and sometimes get distracted by others. ( No names were mentioned, of course!) We wanted to involve them in the move as much as possible, so we made a plan. Step 1: Clean out our old desks, check to make sure we had all of our belongings and Step2:  bring all of our things to the carpet. 
As the bright-eyed excited students sat expectantly waiting to find out where they would sit, I took the karaoke microphone and announced their names, being sure to emphasize the benefits of each new spot. ( like being near the drinking fountain or being away from the traffic path!) Kids were noticing connections and calling out : "Hey, the purple table has 3 "J" names!"  What could have been a stressful anxious time became a connection-making game where kids were predicting who would be the next member of each table! By the time they were all seated, students were enjoying talking with their new neighbors.
It might seem silly to make such a big deal about changing the seating in a classroom, but change can be both positive and simultaneously stressful for kids. Changing the environment in a positive and playful way, with kids taking responsibility for their own belongings, is an effective and important way to help them feel valued, happy and safe at school. Today was, indeed, a very good day!

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