I look at the last hour of the week as a valuable time for reflection, sharing and wellbeing, rather than an excuse to stop learning and run to the games cupboard. I find it interesting that in Australia we spend so much time focusing on getting our students to school, on time, then only to not value every minute of the day that they are in the classroom.
A Reflection, a Goal and a Wish
During the last hour on a Friday, students relax and choose their working space in the classroom. They then discuss and choose two relevant sentence starters that they finish in their learning diaries.
Their learning diaries are accessible in the classroom whenever they need them to set goals or reflect.
Once they have finished their reflection and goal setting (and received instant feedback via a quick conference) they take a post-it note and write a 'wish' for the following week – this might include an area that they wish to learn more about, an iPad app they would like to use or a Writer's Workshop they think would benefit their project.
I hope this reflective tool encourages some valuable learning time and reflection in your Friday afternoon classrooms and has a positive effect in your daily program!
What reflective tools do you use in your classroom?
What other strategies do you have to promote student voice?
How do you give students some ownership of what they are producing in the classroom?
I'd love to hear your suggestions, thoughts, comments and reflections in the space below.