First Week: Day 5 - High Five
The first week focuses on circle meeting rituals. I love this check in strategy to allow each child an opportunity to speak daily, get to know each of my students personally, and get warning if a child is having a difficult morning. Making "High Five" a quick and daily habit will build community and help you connect to your kids.
This strategy was originally called "Fist to Five" when we found it in the "Teaching Restorative Practices with Classroom Circles" packet (found on the Resources page). I was thankful when a parent pointed out something during a circle we held before a field trip. She works as a child psychologist with a specialization in adoption. She mentioned that a fist could be triggering for students who have experienced physical abuse. Because of this, we changed the name of the strategy to "High Five" because five is the highest number you could report. Making your hand into a zero instead of a fist will also show sensitivity to the (potentially invisible) trauma in your classroom.