Help Kids Become “Minute Masters”

Focus skills require the ability to manage time. Help kids become "Minute Masters."

Focus skills require the ability to manage time. Help kids become “Minute Masters.”

Hi and welcome back to Attentionology for K – 5 Teachers!

Try this Short Shot – a one and done idea to improve your students ability to stay focused for longer than the time it takes to say “Short Shot!”

Help Kids Be Minute Masters – Tap into some time management tips to help kids become “Minute Masters.”

A short time ago, a change of season arrived.

Every season has its own character. So does time.

The paramount character trait of time is that it is fleeting.

What’s the connection between character and time?

When educators talk about character traits, they most often describe people…children and adults alike.

But, consider this…

schools and individual classrooms have character traits as well,

and there is a connection to time.

One of the most positive character traits that a school or classroom can “show off” is good time management.

Think about it…

good time management is essential in a busy world, and it requires the ability to focus.

It’s About Time – A School Day Starter – Get kids into the habit of being “Minute Masters” at the start of school.

After your usual morning “rituals,” instruct the class to take the next few minutes to think about how they will be “Minute Masters” that day.

Try an idea from Alice Osborn, a colleague who works under the umbrella: Write From the Inside Out. (In addition to teaching, Alice manages a website – and blog –…

Timed Writing Exercises Make Minute Masters – For students in grades 3 – 5, create handouts ahead of time that present writing prompts

What time is it? It's time to pay attention! Let me show you today's Attention Tool!

What time is it? It’s time to pay attention. It’s tme for you to become “Minute Masters!”

which students will use as story-starters.

Be sure that students have adequate notebook paper and pencils at hand before you announce that the timed writing exercise is about to begin.

Set a kitchen timer on the number of minutes you plan to allow for writing (Alice usually goes for 10 minutes) and then cue the class with a dramatic voice, “On your mark, get set, GO!”

Pencils poised with purpose, students will begin to write furiously to finish a good start before the timer buzzes.

As Alice reports, “The kids love the structure (as do the teachers) of the countdown clock.”

Time Out Other Topics – Timed exercises and multi-media exploration is by no means limited to teaching writing.

This strategy can be applied to many areas of the intermediate elementary school curriculum.

In addition to helping children become “Minute Masters,” timed activities catch and keep kids’ attention.

What can we learn from a tree?

“Minute Masters” need rewards. Besides sweet treats. let kids take time out to let their minds wander. Ask where they wish they could be. Overlooking a beautiful lake?


Rewards for Minute Masters – Teachers will surely catch kids’ attention when they announce that “good ‘Minute Masters’ will earn sweet rewards.”

Make the connection between time management and cooking.

Cookies, for example, take a certain amount of time to bake.

Surprise the class at the close of the school day by inviting students to enjoy a plateful of baked cookies or other sweet treats.

It’s time for “Minute Masters” to eat!

Remember, you don’t need to be a magician to work magic in any instructional setting!

Talk with you again soon,

Barbara♥ The Lovable Poet

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Posted in Attentionology for K-5 Teachers
Barbara Cleary has been serving as a resource to hundreds of educators for more than 25 years. An award-winning writer, producer, teacher, and trainer, Barbara’s focus is on offering easy, fun tools and tricks that support K-5 curricula and assist teachers with classroom management.
Quick tips for common classroom conundrums: K-5
Situation: Students continue to use lackluster verbs in their writing.

Solution: Show toy cars and pretend to make them zip across a page, telling the class that good writing includes action words (verbs) that have "zip." Ask the class for examples of "zippy" verbs like zoom, race, flash, rush, etc.

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