Keeping Mother Nature at Bay

Mother Nature has obviously never spent time at the front of a classroom or she would know better than to send snowstorms midweek. Likewise with Monday morning ice storms and Friday blizzards.

I mention this because Mother Nature has been rather thoughtless the last few weeks here in North Carolina. Just this morning, area schools had a two-hour delay. There have been closures, delays, and early dismissals scattered across the last few weeks like ice-melt crystals scattered on an icy sidewalk—random, necessary, and frustrating.

In the classroom, of course, students coming in after a two-hour delay or suddenly energized by news of an early dismissal can cause unlimited interruptions. Students’ energy levels become completely compromised, and learning can easily suffer. As a teacher, it can feel easier to just let students stand at the window staring at snow falling for five minutes than to try to rein them in and keep a lesson on track. They’ll just be distracted and anxious anyway!

Mother Nature has a clever way of impacting classroom management. What are your tips for keeping students focused on the indoors when what’s happening outdoors is so exciting?

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