Morning work in the special education classroom doesn’t have to be complicated, tons of prep, or stressful for kids or teachers!
(( This post will contain affiliate links. You don’t pay anymore, but if you purchase from my link I get a small commission. This allows me to try everything out that I recommend to you and keep my blog running smoothly- so thanks for clicking my links!))
Morning work doesn’t have to be paper.
We as teachers print A TON. Notes home, worksheets, flyers, data sheets… we can get lost in all that paper! Morning work does NOT have to be paper that we have to print weekly or monthly.
Here are some ideas for quick and easy morning work that IS NOT paper!
Put in tasks are so easy to make. Cover any shoebox with wrapping paper, and put holes in the top the size of your pieces. You can literally use ANYTHING for the pieces. I love these buttons because we can sort by color and shape for those who can, or we can use it as a simple put in task. The more pieces you have the better, especially for trying to build hand strength, attention to task, and focus!
Some of my favorite fine motor tasks can be found here (affiliate links):
Okay, sometimes it can be paper.
But that doesn’t mean it can’t be reusable. There are so many ways to preserve using paper for one time use in your classroom, lessening your prep and stress each morning.
Dry erase pockets are one of my biggest life savers when it comes to this. You may have students that are beyond fine motor tasks like puzzles and put ins, and they need some higher level worksheets for morning work.
You can print one set of worksheets and switch them out each day for each kid who uses them. The rotation takes a while, and they may even need more practice on some for generalization. I keep a folder with each set of worksheets and we NEVER actually write on them, we just use the pockets. So I print once and reuse… well, forever 🙂
Dry erase pockets can be found here (affiliate link):
Comprehension worksheets can be found here: http://bit.ly/PictureComprehension
Laminating preserves forever.
Okay, maybe not forever. But a LONG time. Especially if you are buying good lamination (I prefer this brand (affiliate link) and have a high quality scotch laminator (affiliate link), okay they aren’t “high quality” huge ones like we have at school (that never lasts for me anyways!, but I think it’s the best brand.
I have many binders that can be pulled out for repeated use. A favorite is my monthly vocabulary binders. Because my students need repetition, it takes them about a month to master, and then we move onto new words the next month.
Does lamination and velcro take some prep? Up front yes. But once you have these materials, you have them forever…. and it is SO HELPFUL to be able to pull something off the shelf and GO.
You can find the Vocabulary Binders here: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Simply-Special-Ed/Category/-Boardmaker-Vocabulary-Units-201270
So, keep it simple. The key here is to not have something that stresses you out to prep each day.
It doesn’t have to be a specific curriculum you have… just use what you have and keep the stress off the morning, stay consistent, and encourage independent work to free up your time to check notes from parents and not forget to do attendance in between bathroom runs 🙂
(( This post did contain affiliate links. You don’t pay anymore, but if you purchase from my link I get a small commission. This allows me to try everything out that I recommend to you and keep my blog running smoothly- so thanks for clicking my links!))