Thursday, July 19, 2012

The Four Mirrors

“Life is a mirror and will reflect back to the thinker what he thinks into it.” Ernest Holmes (American author and founder of the Religious Science Movement 1887 - 1960)

Today was a great day at the conference in Union, MO! I look forward to sharing more of my experience but I just have to share the NEW WBT mirror that I learned. Many of you know "Mirrors" and some even know "Mirror Words", but have you heard of the other two variations?

First for those of you unfamiliar with WBT mirrors... I will catch you up! Mirrors is one of the CORE 4 of Whole Brain Teaching (Class/Yes, Scoreboard, Teach/Okay, and Mirrors). Mirrors is a great way for you to see which of your students are engaged. You can take one quick look at your class while using mirrors and see the engagement level.

Mirrors: While teaching a gesture for a new topic you may want the kids to practice before releasing them into the Teach/Okay. Say "Mirrors" and the hold you two hands palms out, your students will repeat and do the same. As you gesture your students are mirroring your gestures. You can even do a Mirrors check and move you hands all around checking to be sure all classroom mirrors are working.

Mirror with words: Mirror words is the next step. This time as you say mirror words bring up you right hand as you did before, but bring your left hand to your mouth and then draw it away as if you were pulling a string of gum from your mouth. This time as you speak your voice takes on a cadence. Speak fewer words at a time because the kids are not only mirroring your gestures but parroting your words. You speak and gesture first they follow.

ARE YOU READY FOR THE NEW FORMS OF MIRROR? Good thing you are just reading this or I might make you BEG! Warning: Keep in mind that it is a LONG YEAR. Keep the next two variations in your BIG back pocket for as long as possible!

MAGIC MIRRORS: In this variation, the creativity lands with the students. You say magic mirrors and hold your hand up like with regular mirrors but waggle your fingers. Then YOU drop your hands and begin speaking. YOU do not gesture... the students create their own gestures to go with your words! AMAZING!

Mirror Ventriloquist: This is great for those SQUIRRELS in your classroom that like to have attention! Call one of these angels up to the front of the room with you. Stand behind them and you speak while the student acts as the ... ummmm... we'll say puppet. You are speaking and the student facing the class creates the gestures! SO MUCH FUN! I was able to experience this first hand today because I was Coach B's... um... puppet!

I started this forum post with the quote by Ernest Holmes. "Life is a mirror and will reflect back to the thinker what he thinks into it.” This quote is a great thought to go with the third and fourth mirror variations. When you give the students the opportunity to create their own gestures to YOUR words they are making more personal connections to the content being taught!

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