One very handy tool I’ve picked up this year has been to use a timer with those students in my class who struggle to complete an activity within a session time. It’s an unfortunate situation that we find ourselves in, constrained to time limits for activities, but sometimes it can’t be helped, and I’ve found using a timer gives some of my students a motivational boost to “beat” the buzzer.
I’m fortunate enough to have 2 digital timers in my classroom, but I discovered a few online timers that my students really love and we can display on our IWB.
Their particular favourite is the Online Bomb Timer (screencap above) – and once the countdown has started it’s amazing how focused the majority of my preps are… because they want to be finished to watch the bomb explode on screen! There’s also an Egg Timer that we’ve used on the same site.
It’s such a small thing, and I don’t use it all the time, but when I have used the countdown timers I’ve found that it gives just a little more structure for my students who require it.
What are the indispensable tools you use in your classroom?