Every day this past year, I would drive down the little main street in our town. I would (of course) get the red light at the main intersection. One day I looked over into a little shop as I waited for the light to turn. There was a big wooden sign with painted lettering saying: WORK HARD, BE NICE. I thought, that would pretty much sum up what I'd like my students to do. Well, the sign would have looked silly in my classroom, being wooden and HUGE, so I took some butcher paper and made two long strips. I penciled on bubble letters of the exact saying. Kids painted them in one day, and I hung them from the ceiling in front of my windows. I didn't take them down at the end of the year, and they're still up! I will probably take them down when I get ready for the new school year. I want to start fresh, and now I have these three great signs to hang up.
I plan to introduce them to my class and talk about what each one looks like, feels like, and sounds like. Each student will make a Top Dog Promise to do his/her best on these three big ideas. Last year my students each colored and signed a paw print, which hung by our class rules. I can't exactly call these my rules, as our school is involved in PBIS, and so we have a set of school rules. But I'm going to tell my class that these are the things I expect from them. Then I'm going to have the class help me decide where to hang them with command strips. They don't have a stand in the back, but I could put each one on a book stand, if we decide not to put them on the walls. I'll have to wait and see how the room turns out. I have a new arrangement this year, and it's hard to picture everything in its place right now, when the room is bare.
I did get a fourth matching frame (it was a pk of 4). I'd like to get a matching mat for it and put a picture of the student of the week in it. Perhaps it could say, "Top Dog." I also thought of hanging them up in this order with pluses and an equal sign between them: WORK HARD + BE NICE + LEARN LOTS = TOP DOG. The TOP DOG pic would be of the student of the week. What do you think?
P.S. Take a look at Trixie Woo in this photo bomb! Yes, Trix, you ARE a top dog too!