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The Morning Meeting: Morning Message & a planning FREEBIE

Hello friends! This is the final week for The Morning Meeting and it is all about the Morning Message.  This is the fourth and final component of the morning meeting. If you would like to see my reflections on the first 3 components see them here: Greeting, Sharing, and Group Activity
This chapter lays out the purpose for the morning message (which I love examining the purpose first...otherwise why do we bother?).  Morning message is meant to: 
  • Build community through shared written information
  • Develop and reinforce language arts, math, and other academic skills in a meaningful and interactive way. 
  • Eases the transition into the rest of the day and builds students' excitement about the day's learning. 

Shared Written Information: 
The morning message is just that...a message written to the class to convey information about the day. I love, love, love that it is a thoughtful way to build community. Students are addressed as a whole group, no one is left out, and everyone starts their day on a positive "note". Of course in kinder they won't be reading these right off the bat but later in the year I know they will be ready for that! This  year sometime after Winter break they started reading the problem of the day without me. I loved seeing their independent reading skills come to life before my eyes and this is just another opportunity for that! 

Reinforce Content:
The letter to class is a way to bring content into the morning meeting. Focus on science, math, language arts, you name it! Whatever your class is working on you can include those things in the morning meeting. I am already thinking about how fun our Wednesday messages will be with Wacky Wednesday (our science/unit day)! Planning it out will be key for sure (and I'll get to that in a minute!)

Ease the Transition into the rest of the day: 
We are BIG on enthusiasm at our school. It is actually one of our "Attitudes" that we focus on throughout the year. Our enthusiasm for learning comes from activities like this. My favorite idea from this chapter was on page 182, "Morning message gains its power from the interactions it generates-teacher communicating with students and students communicating with one another..." That is the key and one of the main reasons I started reading this book in the first place! I wanted that start to our day that creates an environment that fosters open communication in a loving and kind way. That really is the most important thing we can do for our class!

OK....so I hinted at planning a couple of paragraphs ago and I've been giving this a lot of thought. I want a place I can plan out my morning meeting so that I am ready to go and not struggling to think of things to do 2 minutes before the bell rings (do I know me or what??).  The end of every chapter has a lot to choose from as far as sharing, group activity, and morning message goes so it should be pretty simple to make a plan. Here is what I came up with: 
I know I won't really need a spot for the greeting but I thought a place to write some reflections about how the greeting is going would be nice. I will write in the name of the sharing activity and group activity and jot down the morning message in the spaces provided. The only thing this will "add" to my weekly planning will be writing out the morning message. I will definitely want to have those written down on chart paper before the week begins. 

So that's it! Originally I said I would wrap up this book next week but I think I'm ready to move on. I am going to get started on the other two books I bought at the beginning of summer, The First 6 Weeks of School from the Responsive Classroom and also 80 Morning Meeting Ideas by Susan Lattanzi Roser. These both will help with my planning and focus on how to implement once school begins. 

Next up on my reading list is TDQ: Text-Dependent Questions by Douglas Fisher and Nancy Frey. Their names are sounding familiar to me...anyway..Mrs. Wills' Kindergarten is hosting a book study not only on her blog but in a FB group too. How cool is that? Here are the details:
Link up on FB HERE
 AND.....I am still planning on reading a few more before the summer is up. I have to squeeze it all in now otherwise it would never happen! 

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