05 May 2014

Management Monday - Student of the Week

Button Credits: KG Fonts, Hello Fonts, Melonheadz, Creative Clips
This week is all about celebrating those sweet babies in your class! They're all so unique, and as a class, it's so much fun to focus on a different student each week - favorites, family, pictures, treasured items, and so on!

In this post, you'll see how I organize and manage student of the week, as well as, what a typical week looks like as far as celebrating the student of the week is concerned.

First, I call it "student of the week" because it is completely unrelated to behavior, performance, etc...it is truly a chance for the class to learn more about a particular student, and for that student to get time to share with the class.
KG Fonts, Lovin' Lit Frame, Graphics from the Pond Clip Art
Student of the Week is chosen randomly. I have a cup of popsicle sticks that has each student's name on it. On Friday afternoons, we choose the student of the week for the following week. The anticipation, and excitement of not knowing whose name will be pulled is so fun to watch!

I go for "randomly" because behavior seems unfair. Why? Because during any given week, I have more than one student whose behavior would warrant being student of the week. I prefer to just leave it up to chance. Besides, we all make mistakes. All the "bad" kids would have to wait until the end of the year (and might potentially, still NOT deserve to be student of the week), and all the "good" kids would be selected at the beginning of the year. I try to eliminate questions from students and parents about why they weren't chosen. By drawing popsicle sticks, there are no favorites, no good or bad, just good old fashioned fun!
KG Fonts, Lovin' Lit Frame, Graphics from the Pond Clip Art
I have a schedule of events for each day of the week. You can find a more detailed description, the letter I send to parents explaining student of the week, and the "Favorites" page all here.

Monday - Favorites Page and Pictures (Displayed all week on the student of the week board)
Tuesday - Treasure Items
Wednesday - Letter from Home
Thursday - Lunch Buddy
Friday - Student of the Week Certificate

With the exception of Thursdays (which happens during lunch time), we have a dedicated time during morning meeting in which is our Student of the Week's share time. Each of the events listed, takes only about 5 minutes out of our day. Easy.

This year, and last the schedule of events looked a little different, but it took a long time to get through each day, and we just don't have that kind of time in our day. But, I thought I'd share in case you do...

Monday - Favorites Page, Pictures, and Treasured Items
Tuesday - Favorite Book (this was a hot mess - students were bringing in LOOONNNGGG books, that they couldn't read...it was painful)
Wednesday - Letter from Home
Thursday - Lunch Buddy
Friday - Student of the Week Certificate

Honestly, I couldn't sit through another year of second graders reading their favorite book to the class. They tried so hard. The problem was mostly that the other sweets in my class just couldn't sit through a long reading. Just trust me on this one. Unless you're going to be reading the book, and even then it's questionable, at best. In addition, Monday's events were taking forever as well. I needed something that would only take about 5 minutes each day, because that's about the only time I can give to it, plus, the sweets stay focused!
KG Fonts, Lovin' Lit Frame, Graphics from the Pond Clip Art
I do a few things to keep organizing and managing student of the week as easy as possible.

First, I make enough copies of the what I need for the entire year + a few extras for new students, lost papers, etc...

  • "Student of the Week" Bag (mine is a stiff plastic bright green "bag" that I got from Michaels - sorry, I forgot to take a picture)
  • Explanation Letter/Schedule of Events
  • Favorites/Get to Know the Student of the Week
  • Certificates (I don't have access to a color printer at school, which means I have to be choosey about what I decide to print in color at home...I printed 1 black and white copy from my school printer, then made copies on neon paper. Still looks cute, but saves me $$$ on ink)
Yes, I've already copied the awards for next year. I'm getting ahead! I haven't copied the explanation and schedule of events letter yet, because I'm not sure if our lunch time is staying the same.

They all go into a file folders, and are easy accessible. Like on my desk, all year long.

Next, I go through the school year, and block out certain weeks that have special activities going on, or are shortened weeks and wouldn't allow the student of the week to have all 5 days of events. Usually, I also block out the week before long breaks (Thanksgiving, Winter, Spring Break, etc...). 

It also depends on how many students you have in your class. I'm flexible here...just do what works best with your class, and your school/district's schedule.

I have a Student of the Week display that stays up all year, and displays the pictures and "Favorites" page for the student of the week. I just took a black piece of poster board, and a colorful topper I found on clearance at Hobby Lobby, and voila - Student of the Week display. Recently, I discovered these babies - they are life changing! How did I not even know they existed before this year???

The last thing to do is decide when you want to start. Typically this is the second or third full week of school. Again, depending on how many students you have in your class, might change when you need to start this.

Ready to celebrate your students? You can find the explanation letter/schedule of events, Get to Know the Student of the Week, and certificates here or by clicking on one of the pictures below!
I'd love to know if you do "Student of the Week" with your class. How does it work? Please share in the comments!

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1 comment:

  1. I really enjoyed reading this! I am going to have to implement this starting next year :D I love the neon colors! I am also without printing access--so what a fun way to be colorful :)
    G-Iron Tutor


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