I thought it might be interesting to share with you what our morning routine looks like. Especially since I am working with Pre-K through First Grade students! Currently at the time of this post this is my classroom breakdown:
1 teacher (hey that's me!)
9 students in the classroom full time: 2 preschoolers, 3 kindergarten students, and 4 first grade students
Obviously the needs and expectations for this group vary. A lot. Starting with how the students get to school.
We each bring our group back to the classroom. Generally she arrives back before I do. When all students arrive in the classroom they place their back packs and their coats in this basket.
Step #2, they sign their names in.
Step #3, if they go the cafeteria for breakfast they grab their name tag and walk down. At this point in the school year most of them (that go to the cafeteria for breakfast) can navigate to the cafeteria independently and into the line. My para will go down and meet them and provide the supports as needed.
I remain in the classroom with the students who do not go to the cafeteria for breakfast and the students who chose to bring their breakfast back to the classroom. Confused yet?
My 2 pre-school students stay in the classroom during breakfast and my para brings their breakfast back to the room when she returns. I have 1 kindergarten student who usually arrives late, she will also bring that students breakfast to the room if he is there. The remaining 6 students all go to the cafeteria for their breakfast. 2 of them, depending on the day, may decide to bring their breakfast back to the room. They can independently do that so I'm flexible with them and am in the classroom with the other students either way.
As students return from breakfast/finish breakfast they are to hang up their back packs from the basket and then go and use the bathroom.
While they have been eating I've hung up their coats (for the sake of not forgetting who came in with what) and pulled their notebooks and folders from their backpacks.
We do not have a bathroom in our classroom, but thankfully we're close to it in the hallway. Students who can go independently are sent down after breakfast and those who need to be walked down are taken once my para returns from the cafeteria.
Students have free choice/social time while we complete bathroom breaks, take attendance, and get all the ducks in a row for the day. This is great for students who request out of reach items we can embed that first/then opportunity in there and have them get their bathroom break in. This is also a great opportunity for students with social goals on their IEPs to interact with their peers or take turns during games. My para also takes her 15 minute break after all the students have finished with their bathroom break. When she returns, its our cue for the clean up timer and then clean up song to start our day.
As students are added to our classroom our routines are forever changing and being tweaked, but currently this is what's working for us. Are you a breakfast in the classroom or a breakfast in the cafeteria class?