5 Ideas for Bathroom Passes and Procedures

If your school doesn't have a schoolwide procedure for restroom usage, then check out this list of ideas for bathroom passes and procedures.

It would be great if kids would only use the bathroom at recess and lunch, but in the real world, kids often need to use the bathroom during class – sometimes at the most inconvenient times! Here are five ideas for managing this little inconvenience.

  1. Put your bathroom passes on lanyards. Require students to wear them around their necks when they go to the bathroom. Why? Imagine this. Your student is in the bathroom and needs both hands to deal with…well, you know. What happens to the hall pass? It gets set down on the floor – ick…double ick!
  2. Use bathroom time as learning time – they are just sitting there anyway, why not give them something to think about? Vocabulary/spelling words, math problems, quick quizzes, brain teasers, or current events could all go on the back of a bathroom pass. Change the content often.
  3. Another idea is to have students leave the pass in the classroom on their desks. You could use passes you make or any large, novel object, such as stuffed animals. Then you know which student is in the bathroom at any given time, and students would not have to ask permission every time they have to go.
  4. Consider having students raise their hands with crossed fingers when they want to use the bathroom. You can give permission with a eye contact and a nod instead of interrupting the lesson.
  5. If you have ESL students at your school, avoid confusion and embarrassment by being sure that there is a boy/girl symbol as well as the word on both the passes and the bathroom doors.

These ideas came from 300+ Tips for Teachers.

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