Morning Gathering Time

Classroomrainbow Since starting to work in this program, I have done different things with morning gathering time.  Ranging from a half hour get together to doing absolutely nothing and just starting in with programming.  The later was when almost all of the students were middle or high school aged.  It seems the more young students I have in my class, the more need I feel to do this morning gathering time. 

So this coming up year, we will once again be doing a morning gathering time.  I so wish I had a Smart Board so that I could do a bunch of interactive Boardmaker stuff each morning  but failing that I will be putting together a bunch of visuals to go through the following routine.  Once the visuals are done, I will be posted them on adapted learning.  Here is a run down on how the routine will go...
  • Sign-in, Good Morning and Attendance - will have a visual with all students names/pictures in the center and then we will be putting them either "at school" or "at home" each day.  This will be used for the student who is responsible for attendance to fill out the form and take it down to the office.
  • Prayer - we are a Catholic school so we will do a prayer next.  I'm still playing around with how to do this to ensure that the students are active participants in prayer.
  • Calendar - will post a large monthly boardmaker calendar with special events and days at the beginning of the month.  We will go through the date, the today is... yesterday was.. tomorrow will be... routine and then counting down to special days.
  • Weather - will label the weather (sunny, rainy, cloudy, snowy, windy, stormy...etc.) with PEC symbols, label the temperature (hot, warm, nice, cool, cold, freezing) and also go through and decide what type of clothing should be worn today.  Will have a large version of this Climate Clothing Set for that: http://www.csr.utexas.edu/grace/education/activities/pdf/Climate_Clothing.pdf
  • Sharing Students Evenings and Feelings - We have both communication books where students put PECs of what they did and Step-by-Steps that parents help with so that students can share what they did the previous evening.  This will be a sharing time for that.  At the same time we will work on feelings and have students share how they are feeling.
  • news-2-you Activities - Will go through an "everybody votes" activity where students vote on something related to the current news-2-you theme (students will work on communication, choice making, graphing, counting...etc.).  Will also work in vocabulary somehow - perhaps with a word of the day.  Then depending on time might do an activity - song, game, sensory exploration, story...etc. related to the theme.
  • Classroom Jobs - on Monday mornings we will also assign classroom jobs for the week.
I will be working on all the visuals this week and then posting them on adapted learning.  I will also be working on a folder that students will take back from gathering time to complete.  Different students will complete different tasks but some of them will include "Today, Tomorrow, Yesterday Worksheet" (from tinsnips.com), Climate Clothing (smaller version of above), personal schedules, extended conversation on what I did last night, journal entries (not necesarily just writing) and then extra activities related to news-2-you vocabulary, vote or activity.

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