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Take a Break Station and Reflection

As I stated in my last post I have some unruly children in my 7th grade boys.  We were told that we are not allowed to have children take breaks in the hallway any more and that we had to find a "safe environment" for them in our classroom.

Seriously Mr. Assistant Superintendent.  You give me a classroom that is built for 24 and put 34 kids in it and expect me to SOMEHOW also find an "environment" for them to calm the EFF down?


I went to Mecca Target the other day and scored this table for 11$.

Do not judge my manipulatives on the shelf.  PS. When is Google/Word/Excel/Powerpoint going to figure out that manipulative not just a verb but is also a noun and therefore can be pluralized?

It is perfect because it is only about 18 inches deep and maybe 24 inches across.  One person table.
I also got the tiny clip board and the pencil box in the Dollar Spot.  Target is really starting to love teachers.  I have found so many good things in the Dollar Spot.  Things like Birthday Certificates, prize box goodies, decorations, thank you notes for parents, pocket charts, markers, dry erase boards and even organizers for my desk!  Now Target just needs to give us a teacher appreciation discount for clothing! DID YOU HEAR ME TARGET!!!!

I didn't really know what I was going to do with the clipboard.  I thought about just having students sign their name on a sheet of paper as I was standing looking at the kitchen timers.  My idea mid-Target was to have students go to the back of the room face the wall write their name and date on the clipboard and set the timer for 1 minute.


So I put the timer down and decided that they would have to fill out a reflection sheet.

I got the opportunity to go to a AMLE conference this past fall.  I was sick and honestly unable to really "teach" so since I already had a sub in my place for that time my principal asked if I would be up for a 2 day conference in Minneapolis.  I went.  I am glad I did.  I was starting to feel useless sitting at home.  At least at the conference it gave me an excuse to shower.  I was able to sit for most of the day so it is not like i was doing anything different than at home except I was listening to awesome speakers and not Netflix.

Anyway one of the speakers told us stories of middle school students who struggle to express their emotions in constructive ways often express them in what adults believe to be "behavioral issues."  He told the group that you should allow the student the opportunity to explain what they are feeling, why they are feeling, what they did to express that feeling and then reflect on how they SHOULD express the feeling if it should arise again.

Makes sense.

Also I know kids of all ages like to sometimes doodle their feelings.

So instead of a sign in log I made a reflection sheet.

Then, I HAD to run back to Target and get a super cute little binder to put them in.  

I just three hole punched them and put them in alphabetically!  Worked perfect!  They actually make tiny page separators but I just used post it notes.  I like the full sticky ones lately.

I love post it notes.  I love 3M.  Here are some coupons. For real.  They are for March of 2014. Post It Notes, Scotch Brand, and some others that I do not recognize.

So far my take a break has worked pretty well.  Basically they know the drill if I ask them to take a break they go back and fill out the sheet.  Count to 100 then come back. If they can successfully enter back into the class, they are not referred and do not have to have a detention. Bellow are a few GEMS that I have gotten since the Take-A-Break has gone into effect.

This is an ELL level 1.9 student

Hey at least he knows he should not have sugar.

So happy you are "Team Single" now Zach, but really, keep your shiznit together kid!

Cus=cuss.  I have potty mouths in my classroom

Finally I just really liked his picture he drew.  Ps. Ira is my Eddie Haskel I talked about in the last post.

Well that is about it.  If you want my little form I made here it is.


Slant Partners will be emailed out tomorrow.


  1. LOL!! This post made me laugh!! The joys of "Take-a-Breaks"!! Like you, I would have definitely purchased the cute little binder too!!

    Kate :)


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