Sometimes a teacher has to step aside and let students do things for themselves. One example of this is cleaning up. It may go faster when the teacher does it, but it’s better for children to take responsibility and clean up after themselves. Another example is tying shoes. Younger kids may not be good at it, but they need the practice. As an adult, you may feel like you have to solve disagreements among kids, but in actuality, they need to figure out how to resolve conflicts themselves. In the long run, children will benefit from the independence learned in your classroom.
- Students should be placed in charge of distributing classroom papers and materials whenever possible.
- Require students to clean up after themselves and the class in general on a daily basis.
- Have a supply of simple first aid items like bandages and teach the older kids how to apply them themselves.
“But completing classroom tasks that students can do themselves often defeats the purpose. We end up keeping kids from learning strategies to complete these tasks for themselves.”