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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Reminders of Students That Have Come and Gone

Do you have any physical reminders of students that have come and gone through your class?  No, I'm not talking about physical scars, or the possible involuntary wince that comes whenever a specific name is mentioned in casual conversation.

I'm talking about actual, physical objects.  Mine are my clothespins.  I use clothespins in different ways in my classroom, the most noteworthy being name markers on our behavior chart.  In actuality, this behavior chart is more a rule-definer for the beginning of the year than it is a behavior-tracker for the rest of the year.  When we move names to "Uh Oh" during these first few weeks, it in general lets the Little People know that they have really crossed a line in their behavior.  Then I usually find that as they settle in to the year, we will go weeks at a time without even pulling out the behavior chart at all.

Regardless of they ways I use the behavior chart, I always find myself with a good number of loose, named clothespins at the end of the year.  I suppose that I could send them home with the students as a little "End of Preschool" Souvenir, along with the wish "May you ever remain on 'Good Job' for the rest of your school experiences".

However, I do not, and as a result, these names end up in our family clip container.  See, here are some of them:

Then, as I go on my way around the house, I am always a little surprised to see a former student holding the chip bag closed, or preventing the brown sugar from drying out.  Then sometimes I get a warm rush of, "Awww, Jacob.." or perhaps a slight shake of the head with some other name.  Quite honestly, it keeps me praying for a some of them that I feel especially need it.

Whatever the reaction, I find that I like keeping them around.

At least...most of them.

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