Saturday, February 21, 2015

You Oughta Know About...

I'm super dooper excited to be linking up for my first blog hop with Jasmine from Buzzing with Mrs. McClain!

You Oughta Know About Think Sheets!  This isn't a new idea by any means, but I can honestly say I have never been in a classroom and seen these used once.  They sounded a little ridiculous to me when I first thought about using them.  I was quite certain no six year old child would sit and fill these out responsibly.  Plus, every Think Sheet I found was full of large words and extensive writing lines.  When I'm mad or sad, I don't feel like writing an essay, so I'm pretty sure six year olds don't either.

But, I was out of options.  I was at my wit's end.  I had tried every single behavior management idea from the clip chart to a time out chair to a Kindness Cat that brought around suckers.  I've tried behavior meters, individual behavior plans, and a stinking awesome treasure box that I sometimes steal chocolate out of.  Yeah.  I've been through all of the options.  So I tried the Think Sheets.  And believe it or not, they actually worked!

So here's the process in my classroom:

1.  A child may or may not be given a warning (depending on the action).  Once they've passed "the point of no return," I send them to the "thinking" chair with a lovely paper in hand.

2. They fill it out.  Most kids can read the words themselves, some need help with just a couple words.  By about Number 3, the child's behavior has already turned calmer and more reflective.

3.  They hit the dreaded "Do I need to apologize?" question and realize the choices they made might have hurt someone.  They sign the paper, apologize to the other student(s), and return the paper to me...completely transformed.

4.  If it needs to be sent home, I add teacher notes for parents to see.  If not, I just keep the paper for myself.

It's not foolproof by any means, but so far it has revolutionized the behavior in my classroom.  I deal with less conflicts and the students actively make better choices.  Magnifico!

Want one for yourself?  Click the picture below to get the freebie on TPT.  If your kiddos are further along, I encourage you to find or make your own Think Sheet!  You Oughta Know that if you implement them right, they can really be a lifesaver!