It’s inevitable…you will have odd times of waiting during the day. We’ve got five fabulous time-fillers that will make your day run seamlessly.
Why You Should Have Time Fillers Ready
You can have the most dynamic lesson plans. You can be the most creative teacher. It doesn’t matter: you will still need time fillers. The school day is unpredictable. Sometimes you race through a lesson or activity much faster than planned. Perhaps a specials teacher is running late and you have an extra few minutes to kill.
If you don’t have time fillers ready, the students are left to their own devices. This is how you lose control of your classroom, and once you do, that control is hard to get back. By having a few fun time fillers at the ready, you can keep your students’ attention and enjoy a smooth day.
5 Classroom Time Fillers That Work
No one is expecting you to tap dance! These time fillers are easy to implement and simple to prepare.
Reading aloud is a low-tech time filler that teachers have been using for generations. It’s not just for little kids. Studies show that reading aloud builds vocabulary, reduces stress, and helps build classroom community.
Pick an engaging, plot-driven read-aloud book that is not too long and has plenty of dialogue. Ideally, this book should be on the average reading level of the classroom. Although it’s true that students can listen to books at higher reading levels and still comprehend them, you will have an easier time keeping everyone’s attention if you choose a more accessible book.
You don’t have to be a stand-up comedian to deliver jokes. The truth is students will love your effort to be funny; they will even enjoy groaning at bad jokes!
How do you come up with these laugh-out-loud moments? We’ve got a variety of jokes for kids that are teacher- and student-approved! Check them out here!
Would You Rather Questions
If you have never tapped into the power of Would You Rather Questions, it’s time to start. Would You Rather Questions are a fantastic classroom tool. Kids of all ages love stating their opinions and finding commonalities among their classmates.
Would You Rather Questions can be rooted in reality (“Would you rather visit Sweden or Japan?”) or the fantastic (“If you were a leprechaun, would you rather have a pot of gold or be able to bend rainbows?”). The unexpected nature of Would You Rather Questions keeps kids engaged and delighted.
Where do you find a list of kid-friendly Would You Rather Questions? Right here! This list of 400 digital and print questions is themed around back to school, various holidays, and the four seasons. No matter what time of year, these Would You Rather Questions are a perfect fit.
Choice boards give students–you guessed it–choice in how they fill their time. A choice board is a grid where each rectangle suggests an activity. The student can choose which activity he would like to do. Choice boards are great because the teacher sets the parameters (by choosing the possible activities), but the student ultimately makes the selection.
Choice boards can include options to draw, write, use the computer, read, or create. Do you need some ready-to-go choice boards? Check out this Star Wars-themed choice board or this choice board for fall.
Animal cams are a teacher’s dream come true. If you have access to a class screen, you can view them together. You could also set some links on the classroom computers for students to use independently.
When you need a time filler, why not destress as you watch an easygoing sloth? You can “ooh” and “ah” together over the cuteness of a baby elephant. How do you know which animal cams to watch?
Check out this list of the 11 best zoo cams. Pick a few favorite animals, and check on them periodically. You can even turn this into a mini science lesson as you note the animal’s habitat, diet, and behavior.
Bonus: Virtual Escape Rooms
Let’s add a bonus time-filler to the list. Virtual escape rooms are a flexible classroom go-to activity. They are perfect for review. Because they are in a game format, kids delight in playing them. You can play as a class if you have a large screen, or you can let kids go to the computer station to work independently or as a small group. Which escape rooms work well in a classroom setting? We’ve got a whole list right here!
5 Classroom Time Fillers You Should Use
These five (okay, six) classroom time fillers are easy to implement and can quickly become your go-to quick activities. Not only are they effective at filling those odd moments of waiting, but they are also fun to do together. Many build classroom community. It turns out that those small spaces during the day could be what makes your class have the best year ever.