Assessments are done! Let the centers begin! Students participated in four different literacy activities this morning in four small groups.
With me, students continued building their reading skills. Whether it be solidifying letter sounds or working on fluency and decoding, each group had a lesson prepared for them to meet their specific skill level.
Ms. Stark started the handwriting program. Letter Mm was the letter of the day, and students learned how to print the uppercase and lowercase using the proper sequence of strokes. Why the focus on practicing the sequence of strokes? “Repetitive movements used in letter formation help to give the brain an accurate image of the letter shape. Letter formation basically is composed of straight lines and circle shapes. All letter shapes are formed from the top down, rather than from the bottom up. If letter formation is automatic, memory and thinking is “freed up” to cope with the other skills needed, the auditory/visual/spatial aspects of writing.” (Tanya MacLeod, Resource Specialist) Interesting, isn’t it?!
In the Book Nook, students listened to book Alphabet Rescue. The value of a listening center was recently discussed on the Scholastic website. “Hearing a book read on tape helps students see how the words on the page can come alive in a fluid, expressive way. It helps them focus on the sounds of words read without interruption and provides a model of fluent reading. Audio books also give students an important introduction to listening — a skill that they must master in order to learn to read.”
“Narrators on tape tend to embellish their storytelling with silly voices and dramatic enhancements. They emphasize reading as a source of pleasure rather than a skill, and make children eager to learn how to read. Beyond their sheer enjoyment of audio books, children also develop a sense of narrative structure and understanding of language. Stories on tape help them to grasp the rich and various ways in which language distills and conveys meaning. In addition, exposing your child to a range of narrators and their different styles of reading will deepen his grasp of the reading process.”
The kindergarten Book Nook has the books on cd organized according to the theme we are currently studying. Any guesses on what the theme this week is?
The final center is an independent work activity. Students were to look at a picture on a card and identify the beginning (or ending sound, according to which group your child is in.) They then write that letter sound on the school bus picture and color the bus according to the color on the original picture card. This center works on hearing sounds, identifying sounds, and writing letters.
The GREAT news is that we completed two rotations successfully today! That means we have two more rotations to sneak in tomorrow!