Often there are days when we can
predict that consistent routines and behaviors will be broken.
These days occur before holidays, when the weather is bad,
or when a special event takes place. The cues you have established
can be used to vary your routines on purpose, allowing the
teacher and class to preserve the effective routines and return
to normal when appropriate. On these days, more right brain
(creative, global, non-sequential) activities are effective.
The teacher should use a different part of the room, a different
activity, and possibly even dress differently to establish
Appropriate right brain activities
include group interaction, cooperative learning activities,
using manipulatives, creative art projects, games to
review and reinforce work, role plays and simulations,
and music. The teacher can even join the kids by verbally
stating that she would like to vary the routine for
To effectively manage right brain days,
two rules are essential:
1) Routines are preserved
by temporarily setting them aside; and
2) Use different non-verbal
cues to preserve the usual ones. The greater the difference
in cues between left and right brain days, the more
classroom management is preserved. These are not good
days to introduce new material or lecture students.
Right brain days
can be characterized by high energy levels, creativity,
and a chance to integrate concepts and make associations
with other subjects. They could also include distractibility,
lack of internal control, inability to focus on lectures
or new information, and a decreased respect for authority.
Rather than create a situation that puts you at odds
with the mood, use these days to harness the energy.
These are exciting opportunities to get to know different
aspects of your students. They, in turn, can get
to know another side of you.
Right brain days
are special. They can be inspiring and rewarding,
and a source for new types of learning.
Come across an outdated link?
Please visit The Wayback Machine to find what you are looking for.