Making the Switch

I have officially switched from a summer camp teacher to an after-school program one. I’m entering week three for a couple of the classes and week two for the others. I slightly modified my first day of camp script and have added some dismissal procedures to the build ones.

What I’ve really learned so far is that each of these procedures needs to be refined and adapted. There isn’t a one size fits all approach, especially when it comes to dismissal. I have been able to decide on a clean up procedure that works across classes though.

Opportunities to Reflect

When I started getting my program rosters for the first session of classes, I noticed an extra page for notes. This has been a very valuable way for me to jot down the specifics of changes that need to happen. For instance, I initially gave a class five minutes to clean up. They ended up needing a lot more. So I added to my notes that class ends earlier until their clean up gets speedier.

There is another full class that is half kindergarteners. After a hectic first week, I was able to chat with my assistant teacher and come up with some options to make the next week run more smoothly. Those notes have also ended up in the provided space.

Failure to Follow Through

While I’m thinking about that particular class, I have realized that I’ve failed to follow through with my 123 consequences. There was at least one child who got several warnings to listen and never proceeded through the rest of the consequences. I need to remind myself to say, “You are not listening, this is your only warning” and follow it up with “You are still not listening, you must sit out for two minutes.”

I am afraid, though, because the student who needs this is only four or five years old. This is a pretty big class, and I don’t really have time to deal with tears. It is definitely part of meaning business so if I do this consistently and with everyone in the class, that kiddo shouldn’t feel singled out.

Clean-up Procedure

For my own records, I would like to record the clean-up procedure I have decided on. First, I will clap to get everyone’s attention and announce that it is time to clean up. Students are expected to turn off their motors and start disassembling. I go around and collect them and put them back in my tool kit. Next, I announce that they should check the floor around their space to be sure all of their pieces are collected. If they think they are done cleaning up, they should raise their hand so I know they are ready. Then, students wait at their table for a teacher to approve the organization of their kit. The idea is that if they have not done it correctly, they need to fix it. Once their kit is approved by a teacher, and only then, students are allowed to put their kit in the storage box before lining up, waiting patiently, or helping others.


How do you handle it when you forget to follow through? Any tips or advice to help me remember? Leave a comment below. Thanks for reading!



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