WCS Quiet Time
Consider the energy and intensity that often accompany the middle of the school day. Lunch and recess provide students with opportunities to run, play, eat, and socialize. Teachers often see this energy spilling over into the classroom as students reenter for the learning block that follows. Students come into the school, laughing and talking loudly; sometimes they return upset about something that happened in the playground or on the soccer field. The energy can be overwhelming for both teachers and students. So how to transition from high energy time to work time?
One of the Responsive Classroom strategies that we have implemented school-wide at WCS is Quiet Time. Just 10 to 15 minutes to read, write, draw, work on a puzzle, or do some other quiet work can help students take a physical, mental, and emotional breather so they are more ready to engage in learning in the afternoon. If you were to visit WCS following morning break, you'd hear quiet music, you'd see classrooms with lights dimmed, students drawing, reading, or just sitting quietly. Students learn to 're-set' from active body mode to a calmer, more focussed mode. Many teachers say they can't imagine school without quiet time. Some teachers even say they save time, because many disputes and worries that spill into the room after lunch often dissipate as students relax into quiet time. Quiet time offers an opportunity for students to transition back into the classroom in a purposeful and relaxed way so they are more ready for an afternoon of learning. (Sources: wcs practices & responsiveclassroom.org)
C. Verbeek, Principal