Why start the school year off with NO rules?

Aug 03

Before your eye starts twitching and you completely have a nervous breakdown, take a deep breath. I am in no way suggesting you have a free-for-all circus take place in your classrooms on the first day of school. We all (kids especially) need parameters, guidelines, and instructions on the how, when, and where of anything…not to mention the why. (We will get to that one later!)

I am not suggesting we set kids up for failure – because that is exactly what we are doing if we allow them to decide how they should behave and act within the classroom. However, I am suggesting we throw out that old-school term…”rules.”

For some reason my own heart cringes when I hear that word. There is something innate in all of us that bucks the system and wants to know how close can I get to the rule line and not cross over. The sooner we embrace that, the sooner we will set real life expectations for students in our classroom and the sooner we will see results that have lasting, lifelong staying-power. The goal is to establish the inward attitude about how and why to behave a certain way so substantially that it becomes an outward behavior. That transition…from the inward to the outward is powerful.

Core Essentials is rooted on what we like to call “The BIG Three.” Now some would call them rules…or expectations…they can be whatever you deem them to be. The message we want to communicate is that ALL of the standards, guidelines, how-to’s, why-nots, rules, expectations, behaviors, “must dos,” no-no’s, etc. can all be funneled back through these BIG Three. I challenge you to find one good choice or a broken rule that doesn’t connect in some way back to one of The BIG Three. Here they are:

Treat others right
Make smart decisions
Maximize your potential

When viewed through the lens of The Big Three, can’t you see those hair-pulling moments actually having some depth? Can you envision a classroom where students and behaviors follow “rules” because they are innately believed and are rooted deep in an understanding of how these BIG Three make all the difference? Whether you are a Core Essentials user or not, we invite you to start this school year off by connecting each classroom “rule” to one of The BIG Three (have the kids physically connect the rules list, cut up into individual rules, and then taped under which one they think it goes with). Allow this language to become common ground as you teach and discipline the kids in your care.

Share your BIG Three back to school ideas with us at info@coreessentials.org

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