National Educators for Restorative Practices

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2 Minute Connection

2 minute activities that help teachers build and sustain relationships in your classroom.

Teachers prioritize activities that help build and sustain relationships. The only problem is that they typically take too much of our valuable time in the classroom.  Two Minute Connections will be your key to not only building relationships with your students, but also sustaining those relationships throughout the school year.

Implementation

Two Minute Connections are designed to take place daily in each of your classes. Yes, you read that correct - daily. We believe that investing two minutes each day brings more value than attempting to build or sustain community through other practices once a week or monthly. The key is to build and sustain relationships in micro-frequencies realistically for teachers at all grade levels.

The Questions:

There are a variety of ways to collect Two Minute Connection questions. As an educator we believe that the best way to generate these questions are to have the students develop and collect them in some type of container. Monday’s are a great time to find out what your students want to talk about at the beginning of each week. You can also create a culture where students can just drop in questions throughout the week.  Our goal in having students generate these questions are twofold: this does not put this task on the teacher’s plate and we surely get to know more about our students by observing their own thoughts, ideas, and questions. There are some teachers, especially at the high school level, that are more comfortable just having the TMC questions generated for them by other educators or resources.

Example

 

2 Minute Connection: Beginner Practice

Instructions:

Cut out the following questions, fold and place in a container.  Students stand up and form a circle around the room (no need to move any furniture).  The student will reach in the container, choose a slip of paper/question and read it to the class.  He/she will answer the question on the paper and the paper will become the talking piece. NOTE: This activity is meant to be short so have students answer 2-3 questions.

As soon as the group has had some practice; students can write the questions.  At the beginning of a lesson, handout strips of paper and ask them to write a question that states something they would like to know about their classmates.  Give them 2-4 minutes, collect the questions and move on with your planned lesson. During student independent practice, during your conference or during any available time, review the student questions and throw out any inappropriate statements.  The remaining questions go into the class container for the next 2-minute connection.

Stephen Murray