I was inspired by a post by Jen at "draw the line at" to try assigning Art room jobs at my intermediate school. I had never tried before, because this method had never occurred to me! Jen came up with 6 jobs, one for each table, and created a system with magnetic tape to easily rotate the assigned tables for each job each week. After I read her post and saw the pictures, I started brainstorming which 6 jobs would work well in my classroom with my style. I wanted to make sure I could come up with 6 jobs that really mattered if I was going to do it. I already had each table assigned a color so that part was easy! Coming up with names for the jobs was kind of fun, too. I wanted to get some new vocabulary in there, too.
Here are my 6 jobs
- Distribution- Pass out table folders, and other supplies if asked
- Directions experts- Pay extra special attention to the directions so they can answer questions for classmates. I think they will also be able to help if a student comes in late and I'm busy helping another student.
- Tree Huggers- Monitor recycling bin, check the floors for papers and trash at end of class.
- Collection- Picks up table folders at end of class.
- Polishers- Makes sure tables are clean and ready for the next class.
- Mufflers- Reminds class about "table talk", removes an ART letter if volume is too loud.
I'm really excited about trying this out, and so far the students have seemed pretty excited about it! I've only seen half my 4th-6th grade classes and we spend the first day taking care of business, so we haven't used the job assignments yet. When discussing the jobs, I did make sure to emphasize that each student still needs to be responsible for their own messes. You don't get to leave a mess because you think it's someone else's job to clean it up. I also think this will help with the volume. I try to use "ART" letters- 3 magnetic letters on the board that can be removed as a reminder/warning which means if all the letters come down, we clean up early and think about what to do better next time- but I'm usually too busy helping other students that I don't make it to the board to remove a letter. I think giving students responsibility for monitoring the noise level will help them be more aware even when it's not their job. Maybe it won't work, but I'm optimistic. I promise I'll let you know how it's going in a month or two after there's been enough time for a judgment.
Also, I'm going to have a student teacher for the first half of this semester! I'm excited to meet Miss Bennett tomorrow. :)