Managing Bathroom Trips

Square sink image with title managing bathroom trips

Are you always pulling your hair managing bathroom trips in your classroom? Students seem to ask a lot to go, and how do you track it as a busy teacher? If you are only sending one kid each time but swamped, you might end up forgetting who went when. I rounded up a bunch of different ideas for bathroom passes for you! At my school, teachers had to do a paper sign out, so I made my own, and have it as a freebie for you! Scroll down for that freebie.

Bathroom Pass Types

Hands on Passes

3rd grade Thoughts has this really timely idea for bathroom passes! Students either take the hand sanitizer bottle with them or leave it on their desk when they go, and come back and use it!
hand sanitizer for bathroom passes
This basically free pass comes from Miss Giraffe's Class and students who go simply place it on their desk.
plastic cup with word restroom on it

Paper Pass System

This is from Clutter-Free Classroom and it is editable! Jodi says it's "management made easily", so check it out!

No Pass at All!

The Price of Teaching had this idea which is common with some of my colleagues - a kind of where am I chart using magnets and a little decoration!
chart for where students are for classroom

Using Technology

Alice Keeler likes to use Google Forms to have students sign out for the bathroom. If you have a computer or chrome book, check out her idea here and see if you'd like it!


Here is the bathroom sign out freebie! Grab it here! The actual freebie has no names on it - they are just so you can see how it would be used. By the way, when students inevitably ask me "what if I have to go a fourth time?" I say something like, "That might mean you are using the bathroom a lot." and "Just write your name again on a new row".
bathroom sign out freebie

What is your favorite tip for managing bathroom tips? Comment please and let us know!

sink image with Managing Bathroom Trips title on it

End of the Day Classroom Routines

There are so many options for end of the day classroom routines. Are you a teacher who likes to have calm, quiet, activities, do you like review work at the end of the day, or some of both? Or something fun, active and engaging? Throughout my years of teaching second grade, I kept fine tuning what I did until I settled on a routine that was right for me and my students. Here are some ideas I think you'd like!

Read Alouds

I love reading aloud, and I am a big proponent of reading aloud even to older students (through middle school!). I read a ton to second graders. Here are some of my all time favorite chapter and picture books. Take a look at your school or town library, or click the image to learn more at Amazon.

Chapter Books


Picture Books


Read to self

There never seems to be enough time for students to work on independent reading! Try it at the end of the day as buses and pick ups are called!

This is My Week

Wrap up your day with a quick write that helps with home school communication!  This is a free one page document which students can use to write sentences about their day. It is called This is My Week. At the end of the day, my class wrote 1-3 sentences about what happened. Thy love to read them out loud to their classmates. Then on Friday, students bring them home to share with their parents. If you end up grabbing it, please take a moment and leave feedback. I'd be very grateful!

Mystery Trash

I don't where I originally got this idea, but did a google search and found a post at Minds in Bloom from Steph ( Forever in Fifth) who explains it very well!  I also had a little certificate I gave students if they were the winner!  This is a nice way to get the room cleaned and give students some positive encouragement too.

Journal Writing 

Using the end of the day as journal writing time may work  for some class. Students can work on whatever kind of writing you have been doing. I loved doing Kindness Journals at the end of the day, or the very start of the day. Kindness journals were inspired by the book Wonder, and we discussed, reflected, and wrote about a kindness quote on a weekly basis. Below is an  example and click here to read more at my 10 Ways to Help Kids be Kind blog post.

Guided Drawing

The end of the day is a great time for guided drawing. I found a Youtube channel  (Art for Kids Hub) that has some fun drawing lessons! Take a look and see if it would be a good fit for you and your class.

Do you have a suggestion for some great end of the day classroom routines? Please comment and let us know! Sharing ideas is so helpful. 

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    Conversation Starters for Building Social Emotional Skills

    Students cheering on white background and label that says "Conversation Starters for Building Social Emotional Skills"

    Hey teachers! Are you looking for ways to start building social emotional skills into your daily classroom life? I have a few ideas for you today - conversation starters you can use during morning meeting, class, meeting, or at other times!  Please also make sure to comment and let me know other conversation starters you use!

    Morning Meeting / Start of the Day Conversation Starters

    Try these during morning meeting or when you meet together at the rug first thing in the morning:
    • How are you feeling this morning?
    • What zone are you in and why? (use with the zones of regulation)
    • How might you help someone today?
    • Is there a random act of kindness you could do today?
    • How will you handle it if something is hard for you today?

    Class Meeting or As Needed

    Try scenario based conversation starters like these, and even consider splitting your class into small groups:

    Your class is on a field trip. Your friends are making fun of a boy who is walking slowly. What will you do?

    You're having a great time playing at your after school care but mom comes to pick you up. How do you feel? What do you say and do? 

    A classmate is having a birthday party and invited everyone in the class except for two boys. Do you say or do anything?

    You are on the bus sitting next to a friend. Your friend is being mean to his little brother. Do you say or do anything?

    End of the Day

    • How did you help someone today?
    • How did you handle something that was hard for you?
    • How do you feel about today? Why?
    • What is something you are proud of?
    • What is something you want to do better tomorrow?
    • Tell about someone or something you appreciate and why.
    • Thank someone in the room and explain why you are thanking them.

    "Homework" or Suggestions for Parent Conversation Starters

    • What was your favorite thing about today and why?
    • How did you help someone today?
    • Who did you play with today and how do you feel about what you did with them?
    • Was there anything that gave you strong feelings (made you sad, mad) today?
    If you are working on building social emotional skills, you may also like the blog post Helping Kids be Kind!  Additionally, I have a freebie called 100 Random Acts of Kindness that might fit right in!

    Please comment let us know what your favorite conversation starter is is! 

    Students cheering on white background and label that says "Conversation Starters for Building Social Emotional Skills"

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      Poetry Resources so You Can Share Poetry All Year Round

      title Poetry resources on white wood background
      Are you looking for some poetry resources to share in April, which is National Poetry Month? Well, I have some ideas for you, but you do not need to save poetry for just April! Use these ideas all year round!

      Poetry Books for the Classroom

      I love reading poetry aloud and having poetry books available for children to use during free reading time! I have shared poems from all of these books (pictured below) with second graders. I also found out earlier in my teaching career that a lot of students are not familiar with nursery rhymes/Mother Goose rhymes, so I always carefully choose some to share with students. As an adult in 2020, you might notice some nursery rhymes are a little creepy and problematic, so be sure to read in advance before you choose some to share!

      Poetry Writing and Publishing

      Poetry Writing Freebie

      I have a poetry freebie for you at my Teachers Pay Teachers store. You can grab it here, and it will help you teach pyramid poems to 2nd-5th graders. For this type of poem, students need a good grasp of parts of speech. I always brainstormed and displayed an A-Z list of adverbs for my second graders, but with older students, you may not need to. Enjoy, and if you have a few moments, please leave some feedback! 
      Image of pages from Pyramid Poetry freebie

      Poetry Books

      Have your students put the poems they wrote into a notebook. I would buy the blank student books from the Target Dollar Stores. My students would type their poems into Google Drive, I would help edit them, we'd print them out and glue them in. Students would also illustrate the poems and then we'd invite their parents in for a special poetry sharing event! It was a blast and they had a keepsake to take home. A colleague did something similar but students put their books together using Book Creator!
      girl writing on notepad
      image courtesy of Pixabay

      Online Resources for More Poems

      Teachers Pay Teachers goodies;
      Poem of the week from Create Dream Explore
      Poetry Freebie from Mary Lirette

      What is your favorite way of incorporating poetry resources into your classroom? Comment and let me know!

      Poetry resources on white wood background