Bell-Ringer Exercises

9 Sep

Here are some interesting ideas for bell-ringer exercises: Read.

In general, I like bell-ringers, but I add the caveat that bell-ringers could very easily translate to wasted time. In my book, if the bell-ringer doesn’t function as a warm-up for the activity to follow, then it’s just time wasted, and in periods that are 36 or 42 or 47 minutes long, we can’t spare that time. So, if we’re gearing up for a lesson on dialect in Tom Sawyer, and we ask the kids to think about local slang or code-switching and write down an example conversation we might hear in our local dialect, well, that would be a great kick-off. However, if we ask them to pen a poem about their favorite animal, well, it’s not that that’s a valueless activity, it’s just that it doesn’t fit. So, I’m always trying to make sure to connect my bell ringers to whatever we’re going to be talking about for the day.

How about you? Is your practice similar? different? How do you deal with those first few minutes of class?

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