This is Zig-Zag. When I was teaching third grade, he was our class mascot. In his physical form, he was a large, light green, stuffed snake that I had bought at IKEA. He usually resided in our class Book Nook. But Zig-Zag was much more than a stuffed snake. He was very much a part of our classroom culture. Here are some ways that Zig-Zag showed up in our day-to-day classroom life:
- A poster of Zig-Zag was on our door, welcoming students to the classroom. He also appeared in the logo of my parent newsletter.
- Zig-Zag frequently showed up in cartoon form on worksheets and handouts, usually with a reminder (Remember to write neatly!) or a relevant fact (“Consecutive” means one right after another) in a speech bubble.
- Each week we did “Zig-Zag Editing.” This consisted of a poorly written paragraph from Zig Zag on the board that we would edit together. The paragraph was usually about things we were doing in class, and having Zig-Zag write it made it a little more fun.
- Zig-Zag became a kind of good-natured scapegoat when something minor went wrong in the class – for example, “Has anyone seen the white board eraser? I can’t find it anywhere. I wonder if Zig-Zag ate it.”
- Getting to hold Zig-Zag when the class was sitting on the floor for a lesson, or during DEAR time (silent reading), was a treat. Sometimes I used it as a carrot, but usually, I drew Popsicle sticks to see who would get to hold him.
A class mascot adds a little bit of fun and lightness to your classroom culture. Of course, little kids love it, but even big kids have fun with a class mascot. Older kids will enjoy a mascot that is “cool” rather than “cute.”
You can get more mascot ideas at Erica Bohrer’s Class Mascots Linky Party