Fidgit spinners. Teachers don’t like them. But in reality, this teacher doesn’t mind if the kids have something to do with their hands while they are learning.
There have been many fads of fidgets over the years. Stress balls, cubes, and blocks name a few. As a teacher, I have had a couple of those. Often, I have stress balls close at hand.
As for kids – they are all different when it comes to their learning styles. What does this have to do with fidget spinners? Well, not every kid can sit and listen to a lecture or watch a video and learn. A lot of kids are kinesthetic learners. That means they have to move or manipulate things as they learn, hence fidgets.
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The fidgets I like best are the ones that don’t distract. When I first saw a fidget cube last year, I realized that it was a great tool for some of my students. The six options (one on each side) gives the student a good variety of options. The only one that I could find a bit distracting for other students is the side that has the switch on it. It does make a clicking sound that bothers some, especially if the room is quiet.
Koosh balls are a definite favorite of mine. These are rubber band balls. They are quiet and soft, yet also stretchy.
Fidget spinners are a cool gadget, but because they are so new, they are a HUGE distraction. Students see them as toys. So, they are not allowed in school.
There is another fidget that is made of small blocks connected by an elastic band. This one is pretty cool. It is quiet, but it can also be manipulated and turned and can create several different shapes.
Stress balls are very easy to find. They are basically a squishy piece of foam. They come in all kinds of shapes. I have hearts, moons, stars, apples, and even a car. The kids can hold them and squeeze them.
The cheapest fidget that is most definitely allowed anywhere: the pen or pencil. You can spin the pencil, twirl it like a baton between fingers. It can even be shaken back and forth. A teacher will not deny a student a pen or pencil.
In conclusion, as a teacher, there is a time and a place for any variety of fidgets. What works best for one may not work for all. As a student, you can use them as long as they truly help you to focus and not distracting you or others. They can not be a toy; more like a learning tool.
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