Teaching routines to a new group of students can be so repetitious, especially with primary students. While we are teaching all those good rules of citizenship, we can incorporate some critical academic vocabulary. Research in vocabulary education shows that we need to be embedding the vocabulary in every day talk 15-20 times before students internalize, recall and utilize the words.
Here are some ways to embed critical tier 2 vocabulary into back to school routines:
- We can classify rules as learning citizenship in the social studies standards category.
- Identify rule #1. [our rule is follow directions quickly, but use your own rules]
- Demonstrate how to quickly and quietly leave your seat to get in line.
- Identify the details for keeping our desks, cubbies or backpacks clean and neat.
- Distinguish between play time and work time voice levels.
- Locate the exits when we need to evacuate the building.
- Explain what to do in an emergency: fire, lockdown, tornado, earthquake, etc.
- The teacher suggests wearing sunscreen on hot days for recesses, field days, or outdoor field trips.
- Support others and be helpful. If you see someone drop something on the floor, pick it up for them.
- Draw the conclusion that we always need to clean up after our lunch or snacks.
I've shared even more in the video in this post, so click to watch it to get some ideas!
Do we use all of these words in one day? Oh no! That's not going to happen and it isn't necessary. We want to sprinkle these words throughout our daily talks and reminders about routines.
How do we remember all of these words and how to embed them effortlessly into every day talk? It can be challenging with all the other standards and objectives we teachers need to cover, but I have what you need!
I created a free downloadable PDF notes sheet for us to keep with our lesson plans at our desks, near our computers, really anywhere!
Just click the yellow button above to get it now!
A copy of it could be on your daily clipboard or by the door as students are lining up quietly. As they stand in line, just remind them of one of the routines. It's not a whole lesson, not even a mini-lesson. It should take only about 30 seconds to do...maybe not even that. We are just using the word in our own daily communications with students. Just trying to get those 15-20 exposures so that students will start using the words all on their own.
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McKeown, M., Beck, I., Omanson, R., & Pople, M. (1985). Some effects of the nature and frequency of vocabulary instruction on the knowledge and use of words. Reading Research Quarterly, 20(5), 522–535.