Whether you're brand new to Whole Brain Teaching, or have been dabbling in it for years, it's important to make sure that you are using the Big 7 techniques to the best of your ability. This post is dedicated to the first of those techniques: the Class Yes.
Why do you need it?
It is so important to be able to get your kids attention as quickly as possible. You don't want to waste a moment in your classroom; every second is precious! The Class Yes allows you to instantly get the attention of your entire class, as well as infuse a little giggly fun into your day.
How does it work?
When you say Class, your students stop what they are doing, turn completely towards you, fold their hands, and say Yes. All of that should happen in one second or less. It's important for your students understand that when you call out a Class command, their response to you is more important that anything else they may be doing. They should immediately stop what they are doing and turn to look at you. Hands are distractions, so folding their hands together removes any distractions that they may have. All of their attention should be focused on you. An important part of the Class Yes is varying the way that you say Class. However you say Class is how your students will respond with Yes. So if you use a low voice, they use a low voice. If you use a southern accent, they use a southern accent. You can say it quickly when you class needs to be energized, and slowly when they need to be calmed down.
When should you use it?
You will use the Class Yes whenever you need to get your class' attention. For example, you can use it at the start of a lesson, after you have them talk with their neighbor, in the middle of an experiment when you need to give a quick direction, and to regain their focus when you see some starting to be off task. The list is endless.
How can you use this strategy to build class leaders?
When students are called on to speak to the class, they should always start with a Class Yes. This helps to build student confidence, and ensures that all students are focused on the person speaking. Kids love attention and having control of the classroom. Your most challenging kids fight you for this power everyday. Give them the power and watch how quickly your challenging students become positive leaders.
Check out the Where to Start page for more resources on the Class Yes.
One final thought...
You can see the true power of the Class Yes when you use it in a lunchroom or crowded auditorium. It's magical.