Tomorrow is our last day of the regular school year with the kiddos (why the last day of school is a Monday is beyond me!) and last Friday all of the teachers talked about being lazy with the kids and forgoing the schedule since, what the heck, gen ed kids are all probably watching Disney movies and having end of the year parties - why not let our guys in on the fun too! The problem with this, is that our guys are really used to the schedule. Not that I want my students to be totally reliant on a predictable routine, but when they are at school for 6.5 hours, they really cannot be expected to just play and watch movies all day without feeling a little lost. In my first year of teaching, I didn't have wonderful planning skills every day, and there were definitely times when my lack of planning led to behaviors from my students. I decided to loosely follow the schedule, allowing for longer play time in the morning and longer outside times. I didn't have strict centers but I did have them do simple activities in small groups. One of my students actually remarked to me "We didn't do any work!" so they definitely knew what was up. But since I had a loose plan for the day, all was good :)
Anyway, I realized that having a schedule is just SO important. Even on a day at the end of the school year when you want to relax and celebrate all the hard work everyone did all year, you gotta have that plan!
I am sharing my daily schedule with you all. This would be helpful to someone who is struggling with a schedule or someone who is new to teaching. During the week, we have three different dismissal times (Mondays are 1:15, Wednesdays are 12:30, and T/Th/F are 3:45) so if you are like us and have varied times during the week, make sure you incorporate a plan for each of those days. I keep this posted in my room and I send it to parents because they are always interested in what their child is doing throughout the day. The version for download is a Word file so that you can edit it to meet your needs!
Please don't believe that every single minute is followed exactly to the schedule - I WISH! This is special ed and we are flexible of course. But we do our best to follow it each day.