That Time of Year

How is it that I always forget what happens at this time of year?  22 sweet kids stuck in a small room together.  All awesome kids.  All getting pretty tired of each other.

It happens every year.  They've been together all year and are starting to get annoyed with each other.  Little comments here and there, an eye roll, or mean look.  The bickering and general lack of patience with each other.

All little things but they're starting to tear our team down.

We had "the talk" Friday.  We talked about how when we put out negative feelings, it takes a whole lot of positive to get that fixed up.  We decided a whole lot of positive needed to be added to our room.

Friday afternoon, they had to choose three people (and not their besties!) and decided on a positive act-words or small kindness-they could perform that would add positiveness to our room.  On Monday afternoon, we shutting down the school work early and starting some team building activities.

We're reading The Energy Bus for Kids.
There's an adult version.  Basically, in life, you have to choose to get on the positive energy bus or be an energy vampire.

There are even posters on book's the website.  Raise your hand if you know an energy vampire.

We're going to plan out words we would want our principal to use when describing us.  Then, we're going to plan actions that will get us there.

We're going to decorate our names on posters.  There will be traveling to write positive comments on other people's name posters.

They're going to work in small groups to create skits on how to and how NOT to respond to energy vampires.

That's my game plan.  How do you manage this time of year?  Any suggestions for me?


  1. It was bad in my room from the very beginning, so I had the guidance counselor come and help me out a few times! We learned how to do iMessages, and I've been using them whenever I hear an unfriendly comment.

    Everyone deServes to Learn

  2. I love how you are using it in your classroom and with teachers. I really reinforce the postive comments when I see others being kind, it seems to spread the goodness.
    Primary Paradise

  3. Grumpy cat just makes any day better! I always find this time of year difficult and we have many "talks" but I really like your action plan. It makes a difference for the kids to see us adults put actions with our words and I'm sure it will have an impact in your classroom.

    Thanks for the inspiration and the book suggestion.

    Polka Dot Lesson Plans

  4. My class is exactly the same except it's 16 little girls so you know we've had tears and tantrums and whining - oh my goodness, the whining!!! We're all ready for a break from each other. Right now I'm mediating constantly for a group of 5 friends who are not so friendly these days - lots of talks, corridor conversations and a few "looks" when my patience is severely tried! Normally I think I handle this sort of behaviour pretty well but right now we're all just too tired to think straight - I'm hoping the holidays will help :)


    Fun in the Fours

  5. I recently read "Have You Filled a Bucket Today?" to my kids. I pulled it out for all of the reasons you described above. Then, I cleared an area for our "buckets". I plan on putting them up after break. I just want everybody to be more sensitive to one another's feelings. I'm going to look up "The Energy Bus" now and see if I can work it in to what I've started. I have a post about a cool self-esteem building activity we did during a recent morning meeting. You can read about it here: I hope you'll check it out. Thanks for sharing, Stacy @

  6. It is a tough time of year. We did the gold coin activity (I think you commented on it). Last year we read the "Have you filled a Bucket Today" book like Stacy said above me and that worked for a little while. It's just really hard with "spring fever" hitting. I think what you are doing sounds like a great idea!

    Collaboration Cuties

  7. It is a tough time! The kids are tired and we are a little tired too. I love your action plan! This is the time of year when I really find myself having to role model patience, enthusiasm, and use lots of HUMOR and SMILES. My attitude sets a lot of the tone for the room and so I usually re-read some of my favorite parts from Conscious Discipline for teachers to get my head back in the game!

    Fun in PreK-1

  8. Love the energy bus! I may have to try this, because mine are getting tired of the "Tickets of Appreciation". My "Kindness Counts" box is getting lighter.


  9. BTW...I just checked my calendar. There is a full moon tomorrow. Perhaps this explains part of their behavior. : )


  10. Thanks for sharing - I haven't read the book yet. It sounds great and I've BEEN I was reading your post, I was thinking it would be cute to write a story like Don't Let Pigeon Drive the Bus...only you could do Don't Let the Energy Vampires Drive the Bus or something like that...
    Doodling Around in 6th Grade