Here are two of our favorite tricks for transitions in our classroom:
1- Poetry. The monthly poem goes up on the wall and we do some shared reading with it to get comfortable. After we're good at it, I started using it at transitions. As the students are cleaning up their desks and coming to the carpet, for example, I'll read the title of the poem out loud and the students join in reading it with me as they transition to the carpet. It's a good time cue as well as the students know they should be to the carpet by the time the poem is finished.
2- Trivia. I had several Brain Quest pads for 2nd grade stashed around my room. If we were at the carpet waiting for the rest of the students, lining up to leave the room, or go home, I'd grab a booklet and start reading trivia questions. It's a great way to engage the students already there and encourage the other students to join us quickly.
Do you have any favorite transition tips?