August 27, 2003
I used to do our after school suspension program. It was the rule that there was no sleeping, doodling, etc. If students didn't have any work with them, I would assign some. I got copies of worksheets of review skills in math, or worksheet activities from the Internet, and sometimes teachers gave me extra copies of worksheets they had left over. For some of the 'repeat' visitors, I would get work from their teachers. For the English limited speakers, I'd get materials from the ELL teacher that were appropriate. I would also get some word finds, and if students had been on task and productive, then the last 30-40 minutes I would let them choose a word find to do (sometimes with vocabulary words specific to our school). The program was effective ... students would go back to their teachers and say, 'I don't want to go back there again. She made me work!' It can also help the program be effective if you monitor with a small chart. Check each student's work every 10-15 minutes and give him or her a stamp on a daily record sheet that shows they're staying on task. (I heard this one from the teacher that did the middle school ISS program.) Ohhh, you also have to be strict or at least pretend to be mean.