It’s those four little words that can send an unorganised or unprepared teacher into a panic.
Children work at different paces and nothing can be more disruptive in a classroom than a student with nothing to do!
Every teacher faces the problem of ‘fast” kids who finish their work before the others. Don’t be caught off-guard; be prepared with something ready at all times.
What do you do with those few fast finishers? Whatever it is, it needs to be something enjoyable, educational, and non-distracting to the students who are still working. It also needs to be independent. The last thing you need is to have to give instructions and assistance for a new activity while you are still helping students finish the one you’ve just been working on!
Early finisher activities are important because they provide appropriate activities for students who have completed their work and help maintain a consistent learning environment for students who are still working on class work. Early finisher activities don’t need to be complicated; in fact the less teacher involvement required the better!
Here are some suggestions to keep your speedy workers occupied:
- Computer/iPad activities to reinforce basic skills
- Write in their journal
- Tidy up the classroom
- Peer teaching/helping other students
- Write a thank-you note to someone who has done something kind
- Draw a picture using only shapes
- Make a card for someone
- Explain a proverb, idiom, or analogy
- Work on a Sudoku puzzle
- Draw a picture and label it
- Critical thinking activities
- Make a schedule for the day, showing what time everything happens
- Respond to an interesting or thought-provoking quote
- Individualised projects on topics the kids are passionate about.
- Draw a map of your house & include a key