Kindergarteners are an enthusiastic bunch. Whenever a question is asked, hands go up, arms start waving, and grunts and other unpleasant noises can usually be heard. Let's hope nobody needs, oh say time or quiet, to think, they’d never get either.
One year, in a last ditch effort to offer those who needed a little peace and quiet to think some of both, I devised, on the fly I might add (my best ideas come to me that way…), a way for everyone to get the time they need to think. I don’t have a name for it, but here is how it works.
After I ask a question, children take their index/pointer finger and tap it on their chin. This signals ‘thinking’ – it’s nice to look around the room and see all those fingers tap, tap, tapping away. When an answer formulates, they simply move the finger from their chin to the temple of their forehead. The entire movement is silent and I can quickly see who is still thinking and who is ready with an answer.
Naturally, I model it myself and we practice this move all the time. Calm, peaceful thinking is always good to see.