Lower School Students Communicating Confidently with “R Time”

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Brady Janusek and Grant Williams enjoy the time spent in R Time

Brady Janusek and Grant Williams enjoy the time spent in R Time

In addition to spiritual development, academics, fine arts, and physical education, Liberty Christian’s Lower School is focused on creating caring, positive relationships between classmates by bringing “R Time” to Liberty. R Time stands for Relationships To IMprove Education. The outcomes seen from this program have been important traits like respect, courtesy, and good behavior.

R Time is an exciting, dynamic, fun-filled development program in personal and social education that enables everyone in class to relate positively with each other. R Time has been shown to improve behavior, raise self-esteem, and accelerate learning.

Much of the emphasis in R Time is on good manners and cooperation, creating a whole school ethos of mutual respect. Since Liberty is a school where respect and courtesy are high on the agenda, R Time helps create a community that fosters good relationships, as well as one that raises attainment.

The essence of the R Time approach is a weekly lesson that fits easily in any curriculum and lasts between 10–15 minutes, providing a short burst of activity with the following component parts:

  • Students listen to instructions. 
  • Students are paired differently each time so that they have the opportunity to individually interact with everyone in their classroom throughout the year. 
  • Once the children are in groups, they greet one another, stating their names and adding a positive statement about their partner, such as, “I am so glad you are my partner today, Sarah.” 
  • Students then follow the instructions they were given, which could be as simple as playing a game together to memorizing their Bible verse for the week. 
  • Children then take turns addressing the class, sharing their experiences as the teacher helps them reflect on their learning and practical applications. 
  • At the conclusion on the session, children thank their partner and say something positive to finish. 

Fifth grade teacher Katie McBride said, “R Time in our classrooms has helped students feel valued and important. It has built community in my classroom and made my students more in tune with each other.”

According to R Time, its goals include student confidence in the following areas:

  • Make and maintain friendships 
  • Communicate effectively including improved eye contact and listening skills 
  • Resolve conflict effectively and fairly 
  • Solve problems with others or by themselves 
  • Resilience, able to recover from setbacks and persist in the face of difficulties 
  • Work and play cooperatively 
  • Compete fairly and able to win or lose with dignity 
  • Recognize and stand up for their ideas and respect the ideas of others 
  • Develop a broader friendship base 

R Time began in Great Britain, and the originators of the program have worked closely with schools in Texas to bring R Time to the United States. In 2009, three pilot schools were established, and because of their success, schools all across the Dallas/Fort Worth area and other parts of Texas have become R Time schools. Currently, more than 200 campuses have been trained to use R Time.

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