I’m back for Part 3 of my introduction to Morning Meeting. If you missed my intro to Morning Meeting, click here. If you missed Part 2 about Morning Meeting Greeting, click here.
Today I’m going to share (pun intended) about the share component of Morning Meeting. Share is the second activity that happens each day. Sharing is a vital part of Morning Meeting for two reason:
1. Great way to build community in the classroom
2. Promotes listening and speaking skills
Share builds community because it provides students a chance to get to know each other better. Each day/week students are sharing things about their personal lives, thoughts, feelings, etc with each other and getting to know each other on a deeper level. I have seen many new friendships form out of share time. For example, this year I had a new student in January who struggled a bit with making friends. Her dramatic flair sometimes confused the other kids and being new in the middle of the year wasn’t easy. Through share we found out that she actually went to the same acting school as another student and they bonded over that. That is just one example, but the questions (which you’ll see below) allow students to continue to get to know each other over the whole school year, not just the first week or two.
Speaking and listening skills are super important in the classroom and important skills to be learning to join the workforce someday. During share, one student is sharing with the class. This students needs to make sure they are prepared to share, they are using a clear, loud speaking voice, making eye contact with their audience, and staying on topic. These are all important life skills. The audience needs to be a good listener, needs to be looking at the speaker, and needs to be thinking of questions they could ask when the speaker is finished. These skills aren’t skills kids just pick up and know how to do…they need to be explicitly taught these.
The first few weeks of school, I do share whole group and each student shares each day. On these days, we practice being a good listener, but we don’t add in the question component just yet. Topics range from: favorite lunch food, something you did over the summer, favorite book, favorite color, song, etc. These are quick topics, but are a great way to begin getting to know each other and also to practice sharing with the group.
After the first few weeks, I developed a schedule. Every Monday, everyone shared about their weekend. This is an important thing to do because even if you don’t allow share time…all students want to tell you what they did over their weekend, so you might as well build it in. Tuesday-Friday, I had 4-5 students share each day. This was their share day the whole year. For example, Brie knew that she always went on Tuesday. No matter what – Tuesday was her day.
So, every Friday I would email parents and tell the students what the share topic was for the following week. This way everyone had time to prepare and kids would be ready to go on their scheduled day. I found this worked very well for me and kids really took this seriously. Some kids even made posters and brought in different items to share with us (which was totally ok with me).
Here are some share topics I used throughout the year:
- Bring in your favorite book
- Share with us about your family
- Tell us about your pets or if you don’t have one what pet would you like to have
- Tell us about your favorite birthday celebration
- What do you like to do after school
- What is your biggest accomplishment
- Tell us how your family celebrates – Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc
- What did you do over winter break
- Tell us about a special gift you have received
- Tell us how you have helped others in need
- Free Share (students could bring in or share anything they wanted as long as it was school appropriate)