Thursday, August 12, 2010

Effectively Managing Seating Charts

I'm still getting a lot of hits on my blog from people who are looking for classroom management ideas so I though I'd throw out another tip for managing your math classroom.

Here is the best method I have found for managing seating charts. Get a piece of card stock,some small sticky notes, and a plastic sheet protector like the ones shown above. Cut the little sticky notes in half and place them however your desks are arranged. I usually have 20-24 students per class, but I put 30 little stickers on the seating chart for the new students who will move into the class throughout the year.

Write your students names on the little sticky notes in the order you want them to sit. As you change your seating chart up throughout the year, you can move the sticky notes all over the place. I am able to use the same sticky notes for the entire year. If the student changes classes, no big deal, just move them to the appropriate sheet. As long as you keep your seating chart in a plastic sheet protector, it should last the entire school year.

When making your seating charts for the school year, consider numbering your desks instead of putting names on the desks. It is much less time consuming and easier for the students to find their seats especially when you have several students with the same name.

I number the students on my roster in alpha order. As they walk in, I give them their number and have them find their desk. This number also becomes their graphing calculator number. If I move them to a new seat later, they will also change calculator numbers to match their new seat.

I keep my students alpha order for about 3-6 weeks for three reasons. Number one, I pass out so many things that need to be signed and returned that my life is a whole lot easier if they are already in alpha order when I pick them up. Secondly, having the students in alpha order helps me learn their names faster. And lastly, returning graded work to students is so much easier when they are in alpha order.


Amy zimmer said...

Thanks for these great opening day posts. Starting my 25th year of teaching math and the first time I've taught Algebra One in about 5 years...You've lightened my load.
Amy at Windsor High School
Windsor, CA

Ms. Russell said...


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