Tuesday, June 30, 2015

WBT Tuesday…The Rules!

5 rules

5 SIMPLE rules

That's it! And I have to say, I love these rules! You want to know what they are….

Here you go:

I mean, really, could it get any simpler?

These rules are short and easy to remember, but if you know anything about Whole Brain Teaching, you can't just say the rules, you have to use gestures. Remember the more parts of the brain you use, the more likely you are to remember it.

Each morning (especially at the beginning of the year and when I have a sub), we say the rules. But in all reality, they aren't just saying the rules. When we go over the rules, we are using at least 5 parts of the brain to make the memory of the rule. Have you ever heard a song that triggered a memory? What about smelled something that made you remember your grandmother's house? Or maybe you've said something and realized that your mom used to say that? That is because there is no one place to store memories in the brain. Memories are stored in many parts of the brain. When you heard that song, it triggered a memory in the auditory part of your brain called Wernicke's area. When you smelled something and remembered your grandmother's house, you pulled up an emotional response to that smell in your limbic system. When you realized just how much you've started sounding like your mom, you've pulled a memory located in Broca's area (verbalization). Look at all those places in you brain that you've stored memories!!!! Shouldn't students be able to store memories of lessons all over their brain?????? Of course!

Now back to the rules. Like I said above, when reciting the rules, students use at least 5 parts of their brain.

First is the auditory (Wenicke's area); they are hearing the rule when it is said. Second is verbal (Broca's area); they are saying the rule. Third is emotion in your voice (limbic system); they are hearing and verbalizing the emotional tone of voice you are (so don't be a robot). Fourth is visual (visual cortex); they are seeing the gesture for the rule. Fifth is movement (motor cortex); they are using a gesture to remind them. Now you have three places in the brain to keep a memory about these rules…the more places in the brain to store a memory, the more likely you (or students) are to remember.

So, what are the gestures?

Move your had forward quickly like a fish swimming through water.

For the "raise your hand" part, you simply raise your hand in the air. Then, for the "permission to speak" part, you move your hand beside your face and make a talking motion.

Again, for the "raise your hand" part, you just raise your hand. Then, for the "permission to leave your seat" part, you make a little walking man with your pointer and middle fingers.

Use your two pointer fingers to tap your brain as you say each word.

Use your pointer fingers and thumbs on both hands to make a L-shape to "frame" your face, bob your head back and forth, and of course smile really big!

There you have it, folks! Simple, easy-peasy (lemon squeasy) classroom rules!

My favorite thing about these rules is that there are NO LOOPHOLES! 

Didn't do what the teacher said----breaks Rules #1, #4, and #5

Pulled a classmate's hair----breaks Rules #4 and #5

Did not ask permission to leave an area----breaks Rules #3, #4, and #5

Are you getting the gist that everything breaks Rules #4 and #5! I tell my kiddos that if they aren't making smart choices (following Rule #4), then they aren't keeping their dear teacher happy (Rule #5). And you know five year olds all want their dear teacher to be happy and proud of them! 

If you need or want any more information about WBT or the Rules, you can go to the Whole Brain Teaching website, or comment below and I will help with whatever I can.

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