Every school teacher has heard one of their students complain, “They won’t let me play with them!” William Kridler has some ideas on how to address ways to set standards and expectations with students throughout the school year in an article on scholastic.com.
The Peaceable Person Profile
Ask a student to lie down on a large piece of mural paper and ask their classmates to draw around their body. Then ask the class what behaviours, attitudes and actions they think add to a caring environment in the classroom. Get the students to write these positive words inside the outline. During the activity ask the class to explain what they mean by the words they write down and what would a peaceable person do if someone wanted to play with him. Next, have the students write all the negative behaviours, attitudes and actions they don’t want in the classroom outside the outline. Conclude with asking the group to pledge to use the positive attributes of the peaceable person as a guideline for their behaviour throughout the year.
One Teacher’s Strategies
Margaret Bruell, a third-grade teacher, made inclusion one of the themes for her classroom last year. Bruell had her students write responses to the following:
· Tell about a time when you were excluded or included at school.
· Why do you think people exclude one another?
· Are people more likely to include or exclude others in our school?
Bruell says the more students think about exclusion and inclusion issues, the more likely they are to change.
To read this article about promoting inclusion in the classroom, click here.