Are you looking for morning meeting message ideas for your kindergarten, first grade, or second grade classroom? These activities and tips for morning meeting are fun and interactive for your classroom! Before I dive in, I wanted to let you know you can watch or listen to all this information in video format below:
First, I want to review the morning meeting structure that I follow in my classroom. I like to have my morning meeting be the first thing my students do each day, so I will have them gather around in a circle as soon as they enter the classroom and put away their belongings.
My students know when we come to the rug for morning meeting, we are there to listen with our eyes, our ears, and our heart. We like to use a little anchor chart like this one to remind us:
Then we follow the same routine:
Once the whole class is together, we do our morning meeting greeting. This is where we say hello to one another by name. If you’re looking for ideas for your own morning meeting greetings, check out my video here on a few of my favorites: Morning Meeting Greetings
2. Morning Message
Right after we greet one another, we dive into our morning message. As the title of this post insinuates, I will talk more about morning meeting messages in this post, but they all follow the same structure shown below:
In this post, I will go into each part of this structure!
After our morning message, we finish the morning meeting with a class activity and we are ready to start our day! If you are looking for ideas for activities and games to play during morning meeting, check out my other videos here: Morning Meeting Games #1 and Morning Meeting Games #2
Let’s dive into some tips for the morning message part of morning meeting!
My first tip for the morning meeting message is to keep it short. Morning meeting should only take about 15-20 minutes in total, so you really want to make sure that you’re aware of how much time you are taking during each segment. One way I do this is by keeping a similar structure to our message each day. It helps students know what to expect! Below is the typical structure I use for my morning meeting message:
When crafting your morning meeting message, start with a simple Greeting, such as “good morning,” “hello students,” or anything you are comfortable with. However, you may want to switch this up depending on what topic you will be going over in the meeting. For example, if you have a math activity planned, you could say “good morning mathematicians” or “hello scientists” if you have a science lesson lined up. In The Morning Meeting Book by Roxann Kriete, she discusses the importance of naming and personal identity for young students. Using terms like “mathematicians” and “scientists” is a small way to help establish this identity for your students every morning.
Next, I always like to include the date in my morning message. In first grade, we teach our students how to read and write the date in different formats, so I always like to include this as another form of practice every day. It is also helpful for students to start the day off by recognizing what day it is to help them get used to their schedule and routine for each day.
After the greeting and date, I will give a statement to my class. The statement can be anything from an announcement of a big event to share or just a simple observation from the day before. For example, you can tell your class, “Yesterday, I noticed some great readers around the classroom who made inferences as they read”. Sharing observations like this with the class really emphasizes the hard work your students are doing in the classroom and encourages them to keep up the good work.
Next, I like to ask a question or give a discussion starter for the morning. In a follow-up to our observation from the morning meeting statement, you could ask your class, “Do you remember what it means to make an inference from a class?” then you can go over inferences and give a few examples. You can also ask your students a simple question like “how was your weekend?” and have them each think of one thing to share with a friend as a conversation starter.
Finally, we finish off morning meeting with a simple closing. You can switch it up or keep it the same every day like I do, “Love, Mrs. Jones”.
Remember that morning meeting sets the stage for the day. My examples above were mostly academic, but if you wanted to go over social-emotional skills, you could ask how your students are feeling, or ask the class questions about empathy, compassion, respect, etc. to set up further conversations throughout the day.
My next tip for morning meeting is to include important events.
We know our students thrive on a schedule, so if there are any big schedule changes or special events going on that day, be sure to mention this at morning meeting so your students can be prepared for the day. I like to keep a daily schedule in my classroom that includes times, so if there is a special event going on, such as a school assembly, I would be sure to add it to the schedule along with the time and mention it to my students during our morning meeting. This is also a good time to mention any fire drills that are happening that day, even if you don’t know the exact time. That way your students can be prepared and you can go over your fire drill procedure.
Make it interactive. I like to read the morning meeting message together with my class. At the beginning of the year, I might start with a pointer and have the class repeat after me. As the year goes on, you can call up your students to individually read parts of the morning message and have the rest of the class echo read it, etc.
You can also make it interactive by incorporating activities or lessons like missing letters or punctuation into the morning message. For example, where you normally write the date, “Thursday, May 7”, you could just write “_ _ursday May 7” and have your class fill in the missing letters.
I also like to include a small skill review or activity that would take students no longer than 3 minutes to complete at the bottom of my morning message. The example below shows a small activity at the bottom of one of my first day of school morning meeting messages:
The quick review above has some missing letters and missing numbers in a pattern. These are skills that most first grade students will probably know, but it is a good beginning of the year practice to do together and it also lets your students see that morning meetings will be an interactive activity.
Here is another example from later that year:
In the above photo, we had been working on attributes of shapes, so I drew a quick tally chart and some shapes. Students would come up 1-by-1 and cross out a shape and put a tally mark in the chart showing if their shape had 4 sides or NOT 4 sides. This was a quick, easy way to review attributes and tally marks!
If you’re looking for more ideas to use for each part of the morning meeting message, I went ahead and listed some examples below:
There you have some ideas to spice up your morning message! Do you run a morning meeting in your classroom?! How does it look compared to mine? Similar? Different? I would love to know!
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