Engaging Morning Work Ideas to End the Morning Chaos

Mornings in the classroom can sometimes be a chaotic time. Activities like putting away backpacks, getting things prepped and ready for the day, making lunch choices, taking attendance, talking to parents and teachers who stop by can all play into the chaos of a short period of time! Morning work is important because it is the perfect way to set the stage for the day and add a daily consistent routine. Students will get in some quality learning time, they will quiet themselves from the morning chaos and prepare for a day of hard work. Sound like the morning you'd like to have?  Let's dive into some of my favorite morning work ideas your students are sure to love!

Get your morning off to a great start for you and your students with these engaging morning work ideas to end the morning chaos!

Having engaging morning work available is important. Plan and prepare simple, yet effective and engaging activities for students so it takes the guesswork out of your mornings. Using things you already have on hand, plus awesome resources, you will be on your way to getting students prepared to tackle the day. Haven't used morning work before? It is never too late to start! You will see how magical it can be to get those few minutes of learning in at the start of the day, and how the morning routine can change everyone's entire day.  

Phonics Morning Work Ideas

Practicing phonics in the morning can be a great way to get students focused and engaged. There are lots of fun, interactive activities that students can work on independently as they start their day. These activities will get students' brains fired up and ready for a day full of learning. Here are some of my favorite phonics activities to use as morning work.

Trigraphs Phonics Poke Task Cards

I love Poke Task Cards for many reasons. They are a fun, engaging way to get students learning and they are quick and easy to prep which is always a plus. As a bonus, you can use these for center activities as well as morning work. 

Poke cards like these trigraphs phonics poke task cards help students practice 3 letter blends in a fun self-checking way they will love as part of your engaging morning work ideas.
Each task card has a task on it which helps keep students focused and that is one of our main goals in the morning. Students will look at the question on the front of the card and determine the correct answer.  

Then using a pencil, coffee stirrer, pipe cleaner, or similar item, they will poke through the hole under their answer.  Then they can turn the card over to see if their answer is correct. These are also self-checking which is a great way to keep students working independently at their desks. 

These Trigraph phonics cards will help students practice 3 letter blends including SCR, SHR, SPL, SQU, SPR, STR, and THR. This is great practice for young elementary students and helps kick off their day in a fun, engaging way that they will really enjoy. 

Beginning Consonant Blends

When we think of morning work, we need to think of providing students with activities that include concepts they already know, and can practice. This should be a quiet time where students can work independently on skills at their desks and get ready for the day. 

Use easy to prep beginning consonant blends activities like word scramble cards as part of your engaging morning work ideas this year.
Beginning consonant blends is a key concept that is always fantastic to practice. These beginning consonant blend activities make a great activity for morning tubs. 

They include word scrambles that students decode which will help them practice their L blends, R blends and S blends all with short vowels. 

These are easy to prep and can be used with letter tiles or magnetic letters so students are getting those fine motor skills warmed up for the day as well. 

Students will use a card with graphics and scrambled words to decode and spell the correct word. This is highly engaging, super fun, and a great way to start the school day!

Ending Consonant Blends

Whether at the beginning or end of the word, decoding consonant blends is a very important concept we teach in early elementary. 

Ending consonant blends practice is fun and easy when you use puzzles and task cards for practice as part of your engaging morning work ideas in your classroom.

So any time there is an opportunity to practice these skills, we jump at it! Once students have learned the skill, they need multiple opportunities to practice, and that means weaving them into morning work is a great answer.  It is something that should be practiced regularly and there are lots of fun, interactive ways to do so. 

This ending consonant blends activity includes two engaging activities to help students learn ND, NG, NK, NT, and final consonants in the form of puzzles and phonics task cards. 

I like using puzzles and task cards for morning work because they are highly engaging and so easy for students to complete on their own.  

Any time you can incorporate an activity, like puzzles, that students already know how to do, you have a great independent activity.  And . . . they are also so much fun! 

Math Morning Work Ideas

Morning work is a great way to transition students from their home routine to the school routine.  With so many things going on it can be an overwhelming time of day.  Instead of moving forward with that feeling of being overwhelmed, intentionally build in a time to transition to a focused state where your students are feeling in control and ready for the day. 

Morning work with purpose can keep your students engaged and learning and help end the morning chaos in your classroom.
Providing students with fun, engaging work they can practice easily at their desks is always best. Look for low prep, simple activities which make it easier on you as well! 

Math concepts make great activities for effective and engaging morning work. At the beginning of the year, students can review key skills from the year before.  

By the middle and end of the year, we have taught several key math concepts so there should be plenty to practice. Let's check out my favorite math morning work ideas!

Place Value Tens and Ones

Place value is a concept we practice over and over in the early years. It is a foundational concept that is the base of number sense and a concept that students will build on every year. Even after our place value unit is over, practicing this concept is important and a great time to do that is during morning work! 

Practicing place value tens and ones is fun with these engaging morning work ideas including easy to print and store clip cards.
This place value activity will have students practicing place value tens and ones to 100. 

This clip card activity is highly engaging and will allow students to practice counting the tens and ones shown on the card.  

Students will be exposed to place value through pictures, ten frames, and base ten blocks. They will count and then clip the correct number to represent the amount shown. 

Like most morning work activities, these are self-checking so that students can work independently at their desks and decompress from a busy morning. 

Tangrams and Pattern Blocks

When thinking about starting up a morning work routine in your classroom, think about using things you already have on hand in your classroom. You can pull from centers, use low prep resources like the ones above, and use items you already have access to.

Tangrams can be a fun and exciting addition to your engaging morning work ideas to help students practice spatial awareness, problem solving, shapes, and patterns.
If you are like me, you have things like tangram pieces and pattern blocks in your classroom. These can make a fantastic activity to pop in a morning tub or to pull out when you need a quick and easy morning work activity. 

Tangrams and pattern blocks help students with problem-solving and teach things like shapes, angles, measurement, and patterns which make them very versatile. They will get students jumpstarted for the day and get in some fine motor skill practice at the same time. 

Plus, students absolutely love them and they are so much fun to work with. If you are in a pinch and need a quick and easy morning work activity, pull out your tangrams and pattern blocks and let your students get to work!

Making The Most of Mornings

Mornings don't have to be a chaotic and overwhelming time in the classroom. With a little bit of prep work, you can easily transition students from the hustle and bustle of the morning to a calm and focused transition to learning.  

Make the most of your engaging morning work ideas with these easy literacy and math activities your students will love.
Grab some fun, engaging, and simple resources from your classroom and you are well on your way to creating a smooth and seamless morning for yourself and your students. 

Because mornings will set the tone for the entire day, it's important to get students focused and ready to learn with morning work activities that engage the mind and are fun at the same time. 

I hope you enjoy these morning work activities and ideas as much we do! 

Save These Morning Work Ideas for Later

Be sure to save these morning work ideas to your favorite classroom Pinterest board!


Get your morning off to a great start for you and your students with these engaging morning work ideas to end the morning chaos!




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