In Diane Dahl's post "Positivity: An Important Component of Brain-Based Teaching," she emphasizes the importance of projecting positivity and optimism in your classroom. I agree this is a highly effective way to reach out and encourage your students. When students are engaged in a positive learning environment their ability to learn increases. Mrs. Dahl said that at the beginning of the year 12 of her 21 students were below their reading level. Now, after using BrainSMART, none of them are behind! How awesome is that! It is amazing how powerful a little positivity and optimism can be!
Mrs. Dahl also comments on the use of anchor charts in her classroom. I completely agree with her that your classroom walls should be useful to students, not just cute decorations. Involving the students in the production of charts helps them to understand the thoughts and intent behind each one. These charts come in handy when the students need a little help. If they are stuck, they can simple refer to one of the charts for help. Also, because they helped make the charts, they can easily understand them.
Check out Mrs. Dahl's blog. It is very interesting and she has some wonderful ideas!
For the Love of Teaching