Students still see the materials and get distracted by them, reaching for the pencils when I had only recently reminded them that our hands should be free. Additionally, they also fidget and look around, rather than focusing on what we are reading or what I am saying. I have been considering bringing a pencil tin with a cover to class, so when the students are not writing, they will not have access to their pencils. When the students lose focus, I will either provide the student(s) who are focusing with behavioral specific praise. An example would be “I like how _____ is following along with his finger, that really shows me that he is listening”. If I see no one in my group is focusing, I just go silent. The students tend notice quickly and stop their off-task behavior, at which point I try to re-establish expectations.
I attempted to integrate my instructional conversation lesson with the performing arts by having my students make snapshots for our different vocabulary words. I had previously been informed that the students in my class disliked performing arts, particularly my second graders –with whom I would be doing my lesson. I approached my lesson with some apprehension, fearing that getting them to move at all would be a struggle. Instead, the students moved far more than