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Classroom Management Strategies: Morning Arrival

When thinking about your classroom management strategies, focus on your morning arrival procedures.    Kids need structure, choice, and success.  Many of our kids don’t have those at home, so we need to ensure they’re getting that boost first thing in the morning.  I am a huge believer in starting the day right and the impact it can have on our entire day!   I want my kids to start the day happy, energized, and successful!  So we have music, playing, talking, and having fun!   Yep.  Fun.  Yep, we sing, dance, and play as we prepare for the day!   And that is OK!  We’re getting pumped up for the day ahead!

classroom management strategies morning arrival

What is morning arrival like?  Is it chaotic?  Stressful?   Based on doing a worksheet? (PEOPLE STEP AWAY FROM THE COPIER.  PUT DOWN THE WORKSHEETS!)   If it stresses us out, then it’s probably stressing our kids out.    Over the years, I finally developed a morning arrival procedure that has greatly impacted our classroom management.  It gives the kids independence and choice as well as gives me TEACHER FREEDOM (Ummm ya’ll know how great that is….) to take care of any pressing matters such as money, forms, families, ….visiting administrators…etc.

Classroom Management Strategies: Morning Arrival Procedure

When my kids arrive, they follow this procedure:

Put away the backpack.

Greet me with a hug, handshake, fist bump, or high five.

Bounce on the trampoline (For more on the trampoline, check out this post!).

classroom management strategies for kindergarten morning arrival

Eat breakfast if they want.

classroom management strategies breakfast in the classroom

Morning journals!  (For a detailed post on morning journals, check out this post!)

Students write their name and the date and draw a picture. Eventually, they label the picture and write a sentence! The journals are a REQUIREMENT. They must be done. They have the freedom to draw and write about whatever they want! When finished, they show me their journal.

classroom management strategies morning work

Morning Arrival: Morning Bins or READ!

After they finish their journal, they can choose to read books or do morning tubs/STEM BINS.   I have several of these photo box storage containers from Michaels, so those are the morning bins.  I simply filled the boxes with different STEM materials and toys that I found at Lakeshore, Target, Oriental Trading, and Amazon. The kids can choose a STEM BIN or morning tub and play.  When they finish, they will put it away and choose another one.  Or maybe they’ll choose a book.  The choice is theirs.  Extra benefit:  these can be used for indoor recess, too!

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classroom management strategies play in the classroom
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morning arrival ideas for the classroom

Our morning arrival is exactly the same for the entire year. This means my kids can be independent and successful when they enter the classroom—key to starting their day off on the right track! And I’m free to handle all the things I need to handle every morning!

Classroom Management Strategies: Morning Arrival In Action

Check out these morning arrival resources:

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