Fidget Spinners- Useful or Distraction?
Okay, the masses are all arguing about these Fidget Spinners! Kids can't get enough of them and teachers and parents are banning them! There are articles instilling fear in people from their is deadly lead levels in them or they are creating more chaos in the classroom. You can see Snopes article on the lead HERE. There are also parents screaming of all the dangers. Let's be real if your child is young and putting this in their mouth they probably shouldn't use it. Like all toys you as the parent need to set the expectation on how to use the item!
You can read about schools banning them HERE. Now you all know I am a teacher and I do have to say that if every child came to school with one there would be zero learning occurring. There are even a couple students in my building that have brought a doctors note stating they need the spinner for concentration. We even had a crafty little 2nd grader in his very 2nd grader writing try to write his own doctor letter on wide rule paper, wrinkled and ripped. Give him A for effort for trying and it provided humor for us, teachers!
My school did make a rule and prevented students from bringing them and playing with them whenever they wanted. However, if you are a creative teacher and want to teach and reteach ways to use them in the classroom then I think you can capitalize on this craze and become the cool teacher in school! I think if you have center time you might be able to use fidgets or if you are racing for math facts.
I have created a Pinterest board with several ideas on how to use your fidget spinners with learning! There is also a ton of stuff you can purchase on Teachers pay Teachers. My kids enjoyed it tremendously at home and I am printing and laminating some of the work for next school year. You could have your students earn a day to bring fidget spinners to school where you incorporate it in the day. The possibilities are endless! So my son worked on reading his sight words as fast as he could while his spinner was spinning. My daughter worked on multiplication facts as fast as she could. So using a fidget spinner for any fluency work is a great idea! You can be the cool teacher who says read as many words as you can but stop when the fidget stops spinning!
Thanks to Oriental Trading for the Gold and Emoji fidget spinners. My kids are enjoying them. Oriental Trading also has other fidget toys you can purchase as well. We got these glowing spinning tops and my kids have been playing with them for two days straight. They love them when it gets dark outside! You can race to see if you can get these spinners all spinning at once or once again you can create a race with sight words or math facts!
On Oriental Trading, they have fidgets that also are great sensory items! We love the bumpy balls and glow balls. There are so many options
Don't be afraid of all the hype for Fidgets. If we teach our children the appropriate ways to use them then they become a tool to use and not just an annoying toy! I have to admit that I have fun with spinners and fidgets and I think you will too!