Teaching Transitions

For a while, we practiced in “real life” situations by stopping after the five-minute warning and asking a few students to share their wrapping-up plans. Then we’d proceed, and they’d try out their plans. After cleanup, they’d report on what worked, what didn’t, and what they might do differently next time.

Mastering Classroom Transitions
Move students in and out of class and between activities smoothly to save valuable instruction time.

Standardizing the process with five steps
1. Secure students’ attention: “Focus on me, please.”
2. Explain the procedure: “In a moment, return to your desks and take out your history textbooks.”
3. Prepare kids for the signal to start: “When I say ‘smooth,’ you’ll quietly proceed.”
4. Initiate the transition: “And… smooth.” Don’t say “go,” warns Linsin, because that word cues students to race.
5. Observe: Watch to make sure all students are complying.

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