HAPPY MONDAY MESSAGES: Imagine working for two different companies. In one company, you have a boss who is continually telling you the areas in which you need to improve and another company where your boss praises you on a weekly basis for your accomplishments. Which boss would you want to work harder for? In my experience, students blossom as a result of positive reinforcement. For this reason, each week I post a Happy Monday Message on our classroom website to each child in my classroom. This messages focuses on a newly developed skill that the child has developed, or positive character traits they have exhibited in the classroom.
The Story of Evan In my first year teaching I worked with a student named Evan (name changed for the purpose of anonymity). Evan was an adventurous spirit who loved to test the limits of how far he could push people of authority. One morning, Evan tried to sneak into class before the bell had rung. I told him that if he were to come into the class, he could help his fellow students by unstacking the chairs. He did so a tad reluctantly. The following Monday, when I read aloud each child's Happy Monday Message, I thanked Evan for coming in and unstacking each child's chair in the classroom. I thanked him for his kindness and for caring for the classroom community. That week, Evan took it upon himself to come and unstack the classroom chairs each day. He did so until the very last day of school, but this was not all. Each morning after he had unstacked our classroom chairs, Evan went to our neighbouring classrooms to see if he could unstack their chairs as well. By the end of the year Evan had taken the initiative to unstack the chairs of the 4 main classrooms on the first floor. That year, Evan proved him self as an inspirational, caring leader. He demonstrated how far a little positivity can go. HAPPY MONDAY MESSAGES: Monday, September 21st, 2020.
Esther: We loved how last week you carefully rolled up your yoga mask after yoga and put it in the right bin. You learned our classroom routines so quickly! We also loved how you drew a picture of your rainbow mask and wrote a whole sentence about how your mask has a rainbow on it! Your printing is looking amazing!
Frankie: You did such a great job designing a germ last week! We loved how you used rhombuses, squares and hexagons to make an ABC pattern. We also loved how you shared with the class that when you need to feel calm you go to the bucket chair. You did a great job writing out this sentence during writing time.
Gabriel:Your printing improved so much over the summer! I could not believe how small your printing was. We also loved you shared with the class that when you need to feel calm you watch a ninja show. You did an incredible job writing out this sentence with you lower case letters.
George: We loved how you taught the other kindergarten students last week the names of the perennials that you brought in. We also loved how you shared with the class that when you need to feel calm you draw. Your lower case letters looked amazing!
Lucas: You did a wonderful job tidying up after math centres last week. We loved how you rolled up your yoga mat, and put your toys in a mesh bin to be washed. We also loved how you taught this routine to one of the other children who was absent on the first day.
Rafe: You did a wonderful job writing down how you get calm when you are frustrated last week. We loved how you sounded out your words and wrote that you feel calm when you go to school. We loved how you also wrote how you eat to feel calm. Thank you for teaching the other students to use their bubblegum words when they want to spell a word. It is great they can stretch out each word and write the letter sounds they hear.
Rosie: You did a wonderful job making an A B pattern with the 2D shapes on Thursday. We loved that you used a rhombus and a square and then repeated these shapes. We also loved how you helped the Junior Kindergarten students during outdoor inquiry. You are so helpful.
Ryder: We loved that during writing time you worked hard to copy out a sentence each day last week. We also loved that when you had free time you copied your numbers out to 100. Thank you as well for helping to plant the flowers during outdoor inquiry time and showing everyone how to do the yoga moves each day.
Sophie: We loved that when we were painting our rocks and we asked you what you noticed about the colours, you said they were all primary colours. Well done! Thank you for teaching the other students to use their bubblegum words when they want to spell a word. It is great they can stretch out each word and write the letter sounds they hear.
Theo: We loved that when we were talking about germs last week you explained to the class that their white blood cells fight off infection. We also loved how you sounded out your words during writing time to write sentences on your own. It was great that you shared with the class that when you wanted to calm down you used the egg chair in the quiet corner. Thank you for showing the class how to use the 1 minute timer when you go to this area as well.
Willa: You did a great job learning the actions for our handwashing song last week. We loved how you wrote that to keep germs away you wear a blue mask. We also loved how when we asked which colours we were using to paint our rocks last week, you said they were all primary colours. Good memory!
Yiorgos: You did a wonderful job making a pattern for your lanyard and your germ artwork last week. We loved how you repeated the pattern core hexagon and triangle over and over again. Thank you also for teaching the class that a pattern is something that repeats itself.