Wind Chimes

Did you know the Real Housewives of Orange County returned last night?

It did.

And it did not disappoint.

And I would like to go on the record and tell Vicki Gunvalson that Oklahoma is not an invisible state, I lived there for goodness sake, I visit there every year, and I eat good food including Braums, Ted's, and Taco Bueno when I am there!  Excuse me and thankyouverymuch and that's quite enough of that talk!

Moving on.

I finally remembered to take pictures of what I wanted to blog about!  A very relaxing productive weekend plus trashy quality tv is very helpful to the memory part of the brain.  I'm pretty sure I read that somewhere.  If I remember correctly.

Surely you've heard of Rick Morris.  I have talked about him before.  I'm pretty much his number one fan except that I have never met him and he has no idea.  This is a habit of mine.

Well, he is pretty much a Classroom Management Guru.  A wizard. A force to be reckoned with.

And I either saw this idea in one of his books (I read 4 of them back to back to back to back on the first two days of my Spring Break a few years ago because I am a nerd and I couldn't put them down - true story) or I saw it on his website.

Or, quite possibly, I might have just made this up.   But I don't think so.

I'm not quite the guru.  

Now that I've set you up, are you ready?


Wind Chimes Aren't Just For Wind
or Porches or Back Patios!

They're for your Classroom, too!

Who wants to embroider that on a pillow?

But it's true!

I have wind chimes in my classroom.  And there is no wind in there.  (At least not the weather kind if you know what I mean.)

I got these wind chimes at Michaels about five years ago or so.  Now is the time to get wind chimes because it's spring.  SPRING! 

My wind chimes didn't actually look like that when I first got them.  There was some big ole huge monstrosity thingamajig at the top that was like a blue planet of some sort and I am happy to say I bought it anyway because I had vision.

My vision was cutting that monstrosity off as soon as I got out of the store.

So I did.  Then you can see that I was just able to hook the chimes right up over the maps hanging off my whiteboard.  Sadly, that is not a screen.  But maps are better than screens because maps are educational, whereas screens are just white and blank.  Plus I can't really reach them, but that's neither here nor there.

Here's why you might need some chimes.

Rick Morris says if you talk too much, your kids will start to tune you out.

Uh oh.

This may be why I always ask my kids to come back from La La Land.  

Once, one of my extremely mature and focused girls raised her hand after I asked a little guy if he was in La La Land and if so, could he please return to our classroom, and when I called on her, she said, "Where exactly is La La Land?"

She had never been there because she was so attentive all the time.  I visit La La Land during every staff meeting, practically.

Well . . . I try very hard to only use my voice for teaching.  Not managing.

Which is where the wind chimes come in.

As you can see in the picture, the chimes are right next to my Table Points sign.  So rather than say I Love The Way Table 2 Is Working So Quietly, I just ring the chimes.

And when I ring the chimes, every kid looks up to see which table is getting a point.  And then they want to do the same thing that table is doing so they all shape up and I can carry on with the business of teaching.  Because that's my business, people.  I teach.

It works like a chime charm!

I usually only do Table Points during third trimester.  But my chimes are always up.

During first trimester, we're working for gold tags individually, but also as a team and I tally mark how many we earn as a team throughout the day.  And every time I make a tally mark, I ring the chimes.

During second trimester, we're usually working on getting Rudolph to his nose or the Angry Bird to the Pig or what-have-you, and I ring the chimes whenever I move one or the other.

I'm telling you, chimes are a charm!

I would die without my chimes.

Plus they sound very musical and lyrical and light.

It's practically magical.

When the kids aren't talking.



  1. haha I couldn't help but laugh at Vicki when she said Oklahoma is an invisible state...there was even a musical about it! I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who watches reality tv :) thanks for sharing!


    Style Closet to Classroom

  2. When Rick Morris came to my school a gobzillion years ago (for the 2nd time - well the 1st time was at my old school -but I digress) and I met him, had a conversation with him, shook his hand (jealous yet?), he shared about music wands I became obsessed! The chime sound is so much more pleasant than my voice! :)

  3. Sold! I use Class Dojo to give points and the kids always perk up and make sure they are on task when they hear the little ding but I think I would enjoy something a bit different. I'm sure I can find a way to use chimes!

  4. Can you please tell me how many points the tables have to earn to get a reward and then what do you give as rewards?

  5. We just busted out our table points chart and are starting after break. Love the idea of adding some ding-a-bling into the mix. It will make us feel like magic fairies. Maybe. Probably not. But it will sound awesome! Love it!
    ~Christy & Tammy

  6. OOOOOOoooo, I love it! Going to get me some chimes at A.C. Moore! Teeny is the best!

  7. I love you. But sometimes I want to hate you so that you have a hater because I know then you'll feel like you've made it big. But, I don't. I love you because you are so smart and so good at teaching and because you have writing skills. You really do. And I know writing skills.

  8. Okay, I am totally intrigued by Rick Morris' books now! Which did you read and felt were most helpful for first grade?? I teach K and I would love to get some good books to read over the summer! :)


    PS Only 33 days until the Bachelorette premiere!! :) Can't wait for more posts from you!

  9. I love this idea! It's also good timing as I was just thinking to myself today that I talk wayyy too much in the classroom (and maybe outside the classroom too sometimes!).

    Love to Learn

  10. How Pavlov-ian of you! I love it--it's like a real life class dojo but easier because you don't have to have a SmartBoard or constantly be pulling that screen up which wastes precious time!

  11. Wow! I'm going to the store this week to buy wind chimes! What a great idea!

  12. I LOVE the concept of only using your voice for teaching, not managing. I think so many teachers - including myself - need to reflect on that! I have been thinking about buying some wind chimes for my classroom... you convinced me! :)

    My Carolina Classroom

  13. Great idea, Teeny, I mean Rick! I have hanging chimes that I used to use for my attention signal, but I have moved to Class Yes, so they just hang there and do nothing. This idea will give them purpose! And I'll get to hear their pretty sound again. Thanks! :)

  14. I use chimes for transitions and I swear sometimes I feel like my kids are Pavlovs dogs. They respond so well to the chime rather than my voice or a timer or anything really haha

  15. love the wind chimes. I used them all the time in my old classroom but the room I moved to this year has crazy high ceiling and I can't find anywhere to hang them. This summer I will have to come up with a plan because I do miss them. I get tired of the sound of my own voice....

  16. Vickie just doesn't know what she is missing from Braums and Taco Bueno!

  17. Ha! I knew there would be a blogger out there who would take issue with what Vicki said! Ha! I'm glad it was you! You're too funny. Secondly, thank you for alerting me to Rick Morris' website. I also heard him speak when I first started teaching and I actually went and observed his class with my friend. I remember it vividly. He was my cousins' teacher in the '80s. I went to a neighboring school. He was very influential to them, van at the age of nine.

  18. I love this idea! I may even take some wind chimes I already have! I laughed when I read that you call it La-La Land- that's the same term I use. I'll be ready for a new management tip during our last 5 1/2 weeks of school (sorry if it sounded like I was shouting that- :-) ). Carol

  19. Umm.. seriously genius! I am sooo doing this! :) Cute blog by the way!! I am your newest follower... So here's a award for you- The sunshine blogger award! Check out my blog to see what you do next! : ) http://thirdinhollywood.blogspot.com/