What Does Morning Meeting Look Like in First Grade?

By Melissa Makagon, 1st grade

Good Morning Everybody!

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Dear Families,

Many of you have expressed interest in what a Morning Meeting is and what it looks like in our first grade classroom. During our morning meeting, children and teachers gather together to greet each other, share information, and engage in an activity. The goals of the meeting are to build community in the classroom, give children a sense of belonging, build trust, set a positive tone for the day, and practice or reinforce social and academic learning. Our meeting has evolved since the beginning of the year, as the children have grown and changed. At the start of the year, we established routines and behaviors to help our Morning Meetings go smoothly. We learned to greet each other by name while looking each other in the eyes as we moved around the circle. These early routines were important to establish trust and comfort with each other as we came together as a class. After a few weeks, the children decided a morning greeting song would be fun. We brainstormed together some of the important things we wanted in our song. Take a look at some of our ideas:

Good Morning Song

We decided that we wanted some of these ideas/words in our song:

Good Morning

Friends and each other

How are you today?

What do you like?

Let’s have fun today

How do you feel this morning?

I feel _________________

Let’s be happy today

Let’s put on a smile

Let’s listen to each other

It’s ok to make mistakes

From there, we went to our fabulous music teacher Jamee Guerra and she helped us create a tune for the song. Our song has become an important and meaningful part of our morning because the children played an active role in creating it.

In September, our Morning Meeting time was led by a teacher. This shifted to being student led as the children became comfortable and confident with each other. We now have a different student lead the meeting each week as we work on leadership and public speaking skills. After our greeting, students engage in a variety of activities such as reading our weekly poem, counting the number of days we have been in school while discussing place value, or discussing patterns on the 100’s Grid – all led by the leader of the week. As stated before, this morning routine will continue to evolve as the children grow and change.

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Last week we had a very special visitor to our classroom. Ms. Michelle Friedman came in to speak with us about disabilities and accepting differences in others. Ms. Friedman (who is blind) spoke with the children about all the things she can do. The children were able to understand that they shared more similarities than differences with her and that having a disability does not mean you can’t actively engage in the world. Ms. Friedman has written a wonderful children’s book called Close Your Eyes that fosters this understanding. The story was read to the children after they engaged in a variety of activities from putting on blindfolds to moving around the room while Ms. Friedman pinpointed their location by using her sense of hearing.

Michelle Friedman

We also met our buddies along with the rest of the school on the field last Wednesday to partake in a variety of games. Everyone is happy to be able to play on the field again. Here we are playing Duck Duck Goose (or Duck Duck Grey Duck in honor of our Minnesotan friends).

Warmest Wishes,

Melissa and Emma