Monday, September 3, 2012

Creating Our Social Contract and Circle Poster

I really like the way our Circle Poster project came out.  We did this the first day of school, and it was one of the projects included in my post,  A Dozen Ideas for the Classroom and I Found Them All On Pinterest.  Each person in the class including teachers decorated 1/4 of a circle with their name and a design.  Then we put them together. It was an opportunity to talk about how we are each unique but we are each important to make up our whole class.

I combined this project with creating our Social Contract.  All the classes in our building create a Social Contract, as does the staff.  This is from our Capturing Kids Hearts training.  I asked the class "How do you want to be treated by others?" "How do you think teachers want to be treated?" "How do you want to be treated by teachers?"  and "How will you treat people?"  They created lists of words to respond to each of the questions.

I had students work independently and then in small groups, to brainstorm the lists of words.  I like to type their lists of words into Wordle or Tagxedo.  The more times a word is entered, the larger it becomes.  The most listed words like respectful, responsible, friendly immediately pop out. This year I used Tagxedo, which has more shape options.   This will now hang on our classroom door all year.

I like having a Social Contract.  It gives us a consistent set of expectations and consistent language, for the behavior in our classroom and school.  From time to time we review the qualities we expect and that we are working toward.

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