Friday, January 4, 2013

Lesson on Listening & Following Directions

How can I reiterate to  my 1st grade friends the importance of listening and following directions?  With a fun listening and following directions lesson of course! 

-I opened by asking the students questions about listening/following directions: Who do you listen to?  Teachers, friends, family, etc.  Ask students why do we listen?  What could happen if we don't listen when someone is giving directions?  (Be prepared for a variety of responses).

Why follow directions?

-I made a "direction scramble" activity using the Promethan board where students had to rearrange directions to a task in the correct order (shows how to give and follow directions).  I had several direction scenarios for students to put in order.

Screenshot of direction scramble.

-After the direction scramble game, I showed them the animated book Howard B. Wigglebottoms Learns to Listen.

-After the video we discussed what happened to Howard when he didn't listen and when he listened.  Discuss what happened to Howard when he did listen (there's an interactive quiz on the website that I also used with the students).

-I then told the class that they get to practice listening and following directions in a fun and exciting way!

-I told everyone to stand up, move to the open space in the classroom and make sure they have enough space to move.  I played the line dance song the Cha-Cha Slide, which gives directions to follow (the students LOVE dancing, even if they can't keep the rhythm, it's so fun!)  I used a Youtube version that has the words (directions) so the class can see and follow along.    I like to do the dances with them, that also shows that the counselor listens and follows directions too!

Cha Cha slide time!

What lessons do you use for listening and following directions? Pin It


  1. I love this idea! I'm using Howard B Wigglebottom learns to listen on Monday with Kindergartners, but wasn't sure what activity I wanted to do. Idea stolen :)

    1. Hey Traci, I'm glad that you now have a "listening" activity. Both you & your students will have a blast! Thanks for reading!

  2. I am such a huge fan of your blog. I've taken numerous ideas and used them or modified them to implement in my school. I am not nearly as creative. I appreciate you taking the time and effort I know the blog must consume. Congratulations. You really have something wonderful here!

  3. Hi Sharon, I can't thank you enough for those very kind words. I love being able to share what happens in my little school counselor world and am elated to hear that others find it helpful. Thank you so much for reading!

  4. I am going to try this with Kindergarten and 2nd grade tomorrow, and first grade the day after. Thank you for the fun, creative, energetic ideas!

  5. I am going to try this with Kindergarten, 1st grade, and 2nd grade this week. The 2nd grade will especially enjoy it since they have had their first standardized testing this week and really need a fun break! Thank you for the idea!

  6. Hey, I tried this activity with 4th graders and they loved it. It helps me get my exercise in too. Thanks for sharing!