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Five Ways to Use ELA Bell Ringers in Middle School

I love using Bell Ringers in my middle school ELA classes! Bell ringers do what they imply, help students get started and engaged with class content while you take attendance and get materials ready for the class. That being said, bell ringers don’t just have to be something you do in order to get your class settled. In fact, there are many ways to use bell ringers in middle school to increase engagement and review important concepts. Here are the top five ways to use Daily Reading passages as bell ringers.

Examples of ELA Bell Ringers for Middle school.

Standard bell ringer:

Have students read the short passage and answer the questions. Teachers can print the page and give to students, project the page and ask students to write their answers, or use the included Google Form option. After students complete their daily bell-ringer, go over their answers and the strategies that pair with that skill. In less than 10 minutes per day, your students can be well on their way to increasing their skills!

Competition bell ringer:

Begin by having students read the short passage and answer the questions, but make the answers a competition! With multiple choice, students compete to answer most quickly (and correctly). With open-ended and short answers, students can vote on whose answer is the best. You can use the included Google Forms option or make a Kahoot, or have them compete at their tables.

Teach me bell ringer:

Put students in groups of 4. Have students each read a separate passage within the same week. (Student 1 reads Day 1; Student 2 reads Day 2; etc.) Have students teach each other about their passage, one at a time. Have the rest of the group answer the questions, based on the other student’s teaching alone. Each student can review the answers with the group. At the end, all of the students can read Day 5 and answer together.

Think-pair-share bell ringer:

Another way to use bell ringers is in pairs! Have students read the short passage and answer the questions. Once answered, students can review their answers with a partner. After partners have synthesized answers, ask them to share out with a small group or with the whole class.

Think-pair-share teach me bell ringer:

Combine two ways to use the bell ringers with a fun engaging group activity! Split students into groups of 4. Have students read the short passage and answer the questions. Once answered, students can review their answers with a partner from the same group. Then, have the whole group put together a short presentation for the rest of the class to teach them the passage. Have each group teach their passage to the rest of the class. Once each passage is completed, ask students to answer the questions, based on the lesson from their classmates. At the end, have students all complete Day 5 individually.

Bell ringers are perfect when you’re out sick:

With this easy-to-use Middle School Bell Ringers Reading Comprehension Passages & Questions Test Prep bundle, you can prepare materials at the beginning of the year to be used all year long. Create instructions with the top five bell-ringer methods above, print the passages or prep the Google Forms, organize, and go! Place this folder in a safe, accessible place, so you or a sub can pull these plans out and implement longer bell-ringers or sub plans immediately! 

Image of ELA Bell Ringers for middle school.

I’ve discussed the importance of daily practice with important skills such as context clues before. These bell ringers can help you guide students through reading passages that can be used to conquer the most difficult reading skills, including context clues, making inferences, and determining the central idea and theme all in 5-15 minutes at the beginning of class! Convenient, easy-to-use, and beneficial for students. What more could you ask for? Middle School Bell Ringers Reading Comprehension Passages & Questions is the perfect way to prepare your middle school students in your ELA classroom.

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