What is R time?
R time is an exciting, dynamic, fun-filled development in Personal and Social Education that enables everyone in a class or group to relate well with each other. R time has been shown to improve behavior, reduce bullying, raise self-esteem and accelerate learning.
Much of the emphasis in R time is on good manners and co-operation, creating a whole school ethos of mutual respect. As teachers we place great importance on academic study and there is a need to place equal importance on teaching social skills. A school where respect and courtesy are high on the agenda will be a community that fosters good relationships, as well as accelerating learning and raises attainment.
As one principal recently said after R time was introduced to her school:
“We teach values but we didn’t teach how to put values into action.”
The essence of the R time approach is a weekly lesson that lasts between 10 – 15 minutes and contains 6 component parts:
Step 1. R time Rule and Instruction:
Once the rule and instruction have been stated it gives the children a clear context within which R time is to be conducted. R time, being first and foremost a relationship programme, highlights the rule, “Show respect and good manners at all times”.
Step 2. Random Pairing
The children work each time with a different partner enabling them, over time, to work with all of the children in the class.
Step 3. Introduction (Greeting)
Once the children are in pairs they greet one another, using given names, with a positive statement e.g. "Hello my name is Simon. I'm glad you're my partner today Lia ".
Step 4. The Activity
For each year group there are 30 short, easily achievable, age appropriate activities. The children take part in these activities with their partner.
Step 5. Plenary or Feedback
The children feed back their experiences to the whole group and the teacher helps them reflect on their learning.
Step 6. Conclusion
At the end of the session the children thank their partner and say something positive to finish.