15 December 2014

Brain Break Cards (Product Review)

Brain Breaks for Your Classroom!

Although I'm awaiting my own classroom after moving to Australia (from the U.S.), I want to let you know what worked well for me in my previous 5 years classroom experience.  One thing that helped with my classroom management was utilizing Brain Breaks in my class!  

I was teaching 3rd grade in Florida during the heavily testing era of the FCAT and constant student testing to collect data throughout the year.  This can get quite boring for the students AND teachers.  I tried my hardest to create lessons that were innovative and engaging that also required some movement.  (Sitting at your desk doing worksheets all day every day is just not my cup of tea!)  However, there are times you have to practice skills taught on worksheets/practice tests to make sure students are prepared come testing time.  

Since I couldn't escape this practice entirely, I incorporated Brain Breaks!  I found that my students enjoyed this immensely! They were engaged during lessons, participated more actively, could easily transition to the next subject, and used as a positive reinforcement for good behavior.

What are Brain Breaks and how they're beneficial?

Brain Breaks are quick and easy fixes to refreshen our brains during learning!
These breaks help students by:
  1. Calming students during lessons and activities
  2. Refreshening students' brains to open up for more ideas and critical thinking
  3. A great incentive for positive reinforcement for whole class and individuals
  4. Getting rid of jitters throughout the day
  5. Great transitioning tool between subjects
They help teachers with classroom management and student engagement.

When to use Brain Breaks?

  • Between subjects, encourages students to clean up during activities and prepare for the next subject
  • When students aren't actively engaging, falling asleep
  • First thing in the morning, awaken students
  • After lunch/recess, gets students ready to get back to work
  • End of the day
  • Time filler throughout the day

What I used?

I have used Kids Just Dance videos on YouTube, a quick class game (Spelling Sparkle), but I mainly used these cards from All Students Can Shine on TeachersPayTeachers.  These were great because they were already thought out for you, easy to assemble, allows students to pick randomly, and more!  To assemble all you had to do it print & cut out the sheets, and then hole punch and place cards on a ring.  I loved this because I could easily hang this anywhere in the classroom.  I decided to place it in the front of the classroom near my teacher desk and allowed students to access them too.  Plus, they were only $4.25!  (I love how affordable everything on TPT is!)  Another upside was that you could also create your own cards as well!  

I gave this product 4 out of 4 Stars!

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