So excited for the first installment of the Classroom Quick Tips linky!
Font: Jessica Stanford
Background: I Teach? What's Your Super Power?
Frame: Tonya's Treats for Teachers
Link up with a quick tip that makes life in your classroom easier. There are no weekly themes or topics. The only real "rule" is that you may not link up with a paid product or unit. Our goal is to share the small nuggets of greatness that are happening every day in our classrooms! If you missed the backstory about how this party got started, click here!

When it's time to for students to work on their individual dry erase boards, give them one minute of "free draw time" before you start.
My students use their individual white boards mostly for math. When I want them to get out their white boards, I will say, "Please take out your board, marker, and sock. Your one minute of free time starts........... NOW!" Then I start the timer. (In case you're wondering what the sock is for... It's an eraser! It also makes a very handy holder for the markers.)

The one minute of free time works for lots of reasons:
  1. Everyone hurries to get out their supplies. I start the timer as soon as I can, so if you're not ready, then that cuts into YOUR free time.
  2. It helps to cut down on doodling when it's time to do academic work. When I see someone doodling, I will say, "Oops. We already had our free drawing time. Now it's time to work."
  3. I'm able to put out fires, answer questions, get someone a replacement marker, help slow-transitioning kids get ready, etc. without having to worry about the rest of the class getting too rowdy.
  4. If I forgot to bring up my SMARTBoard lesson or need to grab a last-minute teaching tool, I can do that without having the pressure of 21 little people staring at me and waiting.
  5. It's fun! And it's only one minute :)
When the timer goes off, the bunnies are trained to immediately erase their boards and get ready to work. It seriously works like a dream!

Make sure you hop over to Diving Into 2nd Grade to check out Jean's Classroom Quick Tip. We'd love for you to join our party! And check back every Thursday for more Classroom Quick Tips from Jean and I... and anyone else who wants to play in the sandbox with us! :) We've also made a Pinterest Board to keep track of the AMAZING tips and tricks shared by other bloggy friends.

Hope my tips helps to make your life a little easier!


  1. I saw your post and thought, "Oh what a cute frame!" And then I realized it was mine! HAHA! Great linky party! I will have to link up soon! I have yet to try one...kinda scared!

    Tonya’s Treats for Teachers

  2. Great idea Angela! I usually only do that at the beginning of the year, so they get used to using the board, but doing it continuously might just be something I need to try. Thanks for the great linky.
    Bright Concepts 4 Teachers

  3. How fun! Thanks for setting up this weekly linky!! :)


    Sailing into Second

  4. Great idea! They do need to get that "need to doodle" out of their system, and I'm all for any activity that gets them to get their materials quickly PLUS buys time if you need it!

    Sally from Elementary Matters

  5. Thanks for hosting this linky party. I also only let them doodle at the beginning of the year, but I'd probably have less problems if I let them do it each day!

    Literacy Spark

  6. Great idea! We use our mini whiteboards all the time for handwriting, so this would be an ideal tip to use with my Prep/1 kiddos!

    Miss Galvin Learns

  7. Love it!! I was only thinking yesterday during our math session how frustrating it is to constantly tell the children to stop doodling!! I am trying this ASAP. thanks :)

  8. I just tried linking up, but it must have closed as I was trying. Bummer. Oh well I have a quick tip on my blog :)


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