What Is Morning Meeting?
Responsive Classroom Morning Meeting is an engaging way to start each day, build a strong sense of community, and set children up for success socially and academically. Each morning, students and teachers gather together in a circle for twenty to thirty minutes and interact with one another during four purposeful components:
- Greeting: Students and teachers greet one other by name and practice offering hospitality.
- Sharing: Students share information about important events in their lives. Listeners often offer empathetic comments or ask clarifying questions.
- Group Activity: Everyone participates in a brief, lively activity that fosters group cohesion and helps students practice social and academic skills (for example, reciting a poem, dancing, singing, or playing a game that reinforces social or academic skills).
- Morning Message: Students read and interact with a short message written by their teacher. The message is crafted to help students focus on the work they’ll do in school that day.
- Keeping Morning Meeting Greetings Fresh and Fun – After doing many Morning Meetings, teachers often wonder how to keep the sense of comfortable routine while also varying the meetings enough to keep students (and adults) interested and engaged.
- The Power of Morning Meeting – The earnest fourth grade girl straightened up tall and looked around the circle, drew a deep breath and began: “Our greeting today will go like this. First you say your name, then you say when you would like to have lived. Then we’ll all greet you back by saying ‘Hello’ and your name. I’ll go first so you can see how it’s done.” I noticed her hands folding and unfolding in her lap—perhaps she was a bit nervous—but her eyes sparkled.
- Morning Meeting is for Everyone – Welcome to Morning Meeting in my full inclusion classroom. Twenty-one first graders sit in a large circle on a brightly colored rug. I’m in a small rocking chair, my hand lightly touching one child’s back. Another adult sits behind a child, supporting him as he sits with his legs, encased in blue braces, stretched out. Wiggling beside him, another child sits on a sissel seat that encourages balance and provides tactile input.
- Morning Meeting and Older Students – If you teach older students—those between 10 and 14—you may have wondered if Morning Meeting is appropriate for them. Can you spare the time from the intensifying academic focus in the upper grades? Do they really need the structure and support Morning Meeting provides? The answer is a definite Yes.