I was going to start by explaining some of the practical changes I've been enjoying in my Morning Meeting, but why not start with the coolest part instead??
The excitement has started all thanks to what I'm calling the "30 second field trips" I added to the end of my Morning Meeting presentations. If you don't already know this, Nearpod allows you to place a "field trip" into your presentation using 360 imaging. It was really awesome when we finished early one day and I told kids to enjoy the 30 second field trip, and I advanced to that slide--and everyone cheered, stood up, and started walking around the room while looking at their iPads--they found themselves under the sea, "swimming" next to a deep sea diver for just a short while. They were so excited; I'm not sure I've ever heard so many "whoas" and "awesomes" during a Morning Meeting before.
Next week, we'll be headed to Santorini. :) Here is a glimpse:
So that was exciting and I had to share! Now on to the nitty gritty stuff :)
I am happy to report that many of the hopes I shared regarding participation during Morning Meeting came to fruition. The first change I talked about during a previous post was uploading all of the Morning Meeting Keynote slides as well as the Focus Topic slides onto Nearpod. Now, when I go from slide to slide on my projector, students can follow along without anyone needing to turn and face the board. This has been a time saver and I know the kids with backs to the board seemed to appreciate it!
I added quizzes after the Self-Reflection and Sharing slides. The Morning Meeting student leader reads the prompt and then I change to the quiz slide to give students a chance to think about their answer and they select which option best describes their self-reflection or their "share" for the day. This way, all students have an answer ready when it is their turn. I duplicated the prompt slide and have it pasted before and after the quiz so that in case someone still needs to read the prompt, it is still visible even though the quiz is done.
You can see the layout in edit mode here:
For the Gratitude Circle, I had to make a few tweaks. We did a test run of it on Thursday (usually Gratitude Circle is only on Fridays). Originally, I had a Padlet wall link after the gratitude prompt slide so that kids could go straight to Padlet and add their grateful statement. However, with so many kids trying to type on Padlet at the same time, the screen kept "jumping" so that they could not find their own posts as they were typing, and many students had to start over...it was not the best way to get their answers down. So, later I went back in and removed the Padlet link and instead put an open-ended response Nearpod slide and that did the trick. On Friday, it was a seamless transition to the Gratitude Circle as kids typed and then shared their responses verbally, too. The cool part was that their responses were popping up on the projector after they would type, so even though their work disappeared on their own screens, they were still able to refer to the board if they needed to look at what they wrote while they verbally shared. So that worked well.
Here is the layout for this part:
Probably the most meaningful change made to Morning Meeting was regarding the Poem of the Week: Now that the poem is literally in everyone's hands, it has been so neat to see every kid actually reading the poem without me feeling like I am pulling teeth to get the last few participating! Here is the slide I show them before projecting the poem:
I know, this doesn't look like much...but such a simple tweak has caused a big change in how kids approach the Poem of the Week. I have never had them do a turn-and-read, but they enjoyed it. By day 4, it was also great to be able to get up during the meeting and move to read to someone else, and then come back to their spots so we could move on. It made for a nice change. They have really been doing a nice job being on task, too...which is wonderful.
So glad I tried this!