Restorative Circles

A guide to describe what Restorative Circles are and how they work

Using circles to check the class climate

It’s Week 4 of the semester.  You have learned the students’ names.You’ve established a rhythm.  Perhaps you have even co-created ground rules, and you want to know how things are going. This circle activity can provide feedback about what is working well and what can be changed to shift the temperature of the class.

This activity allows the class to determine what is working as well as what can be done to capitalize on the good feelings and allow them to grow.

Circle Activity:
Have students to answer the following questions. It might be helpful for them to write down the answers first before answering aloud.

  1. What is currently working in the class?  Alternatively, you may ask what are you enjoying about the class?
  2. How can we get more of the good to grow?
  3. What would you like to see less of in the class? 
  4. How can we prevent what we don’t want from happening to create more space for what we do want?
  5. What can you do personally to improve the learning environment?

After answering the questions individually, students can gather in the big circle to share their responses. 

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