Monday, September 9, 2013

Writing a Class Mission Statement in Kindergarten


As part of The Leader in Me program, each classroom at my school has a class mission statement.  It is supposed to be student-generated.  And I will admit, I was totally skeptical about how that would go in kindergarten, especially at the beginning of the year.  But the process was way smoother than I expected, and I think my class came up with an excellent mission statement.  So I thought I'd share our process.

We wrote our mission statement about 8 days into the school year.  This gave me enough time to talk a lot about why we're at school and how we care about each other and work hard every day, etc.  I introduced our mission statement by talking about how we are "on a misson" at school.  I asked the kids what our mission was.  What did we come to school for?  They generated this list:
-to learn
-to read
-to play
-to go to centers
-to have fun
-to think
-to do art
-to write
-to make new friends 
-to paint
-to be good listeners
-to walk quietly in the hall

Then, I helped them group the items, like learning, thinking, reading and writing went together, painting and art went together, etc.  I told the kids that we needed to come up with a mission statement, so when someone asked us why we came to school, we could tell them.   I asked, "Do you think you would remember to tell them all these different things?"  They of course said "Yes."  Haha, so I said, "Well I don't think I will remember all these things, so let's try to narrow it down a little bit."

On a new piece of paper, I drew a stick figure and asked the kids to think about our list as we went through each part of the stick figure.  I pointed to the head and asked what we used our brain for.  We listed thinking, learning, reading, and writing up there.  We labeled our eyes for looking, our mouths for speaking, and our ears for listening.

I added a heart to our stick figure and asked, "What do we want our heart to do at school?"  They said, "Beat."  Obviously, they are just too smart!  I asked what they wanted their heart to feel at school.  They said: happy, love, happy to be with friends, being nice, making new friends. 

And we labeled our feet for walking and running and playing.  Because I wanted to include leadership in our mission statement, I mentioned how they used their feet when they were the leader, to show everyone else what to do and where to go.   So we added the word "lead" by our feet, too.

So finally, we went back up to the head, and I told the kids we needed to pick the most important word for each thing, so we wouldn't have too many words to remember.  We picked "learn, listen, love, and lead."  The alliteration makes me way too excited, but I swear they came to these words *mostly* on their own.

We go over our mission statement each morning during Morning Meeting.  We point to our head and say "learn," ears and say "listen," heart and say "love," feet and say "lead."  I also made this little visual aid (that coordinates with our college sports theme).
So, there you have it.  Sorry this was kind of long and lacking in pictures.  I forgot to take pictures of the lists we made at school.  But if you've thought about writing a class mission statement, be brave!  They can do it!  I hope this helps :)

4 comments:

  1. Cracker Trail Elementary School in Sebring, Florida just became a Leader in Me School. We are working on our classroom and personal mission statements now. So glad I stumbled on your BLOG. I teach first grade.

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  2. Sorry, failed to mention in my last comment that I'm sharing your BLOG with colleagues. Thank-you for such an awesome Classroom Mission Statement example!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for your sweet comments! I'm so glad this was helpful :) My school just started Leader in Me last year, and I really like it! Good luck!!

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  3. Hi Danielle,
    This is fantastic! I work for FranklinCovey with The Leader in Me. Can I have your permission to summarize your process and use a picture of your class mission statement as part of an upcoming newsletter we are sending out? Please just send me an email or comment on this post so I know. Thank you! Stephanie Bexfield (stephanie.bexfield@franklincovey.com)

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