The Swooper Citizens character trait of the week is PATIENCE. There are so many times throughout the day where we all have to practice being patient. We began this week’s lesson brainstorming ideas for things to do when waiting in a long line at Disneyland. The students had some great ideas: play I Spy, play Rock Paper Scissors, go to a different line, and more! Mrs. Vanetti then introduced our Marshmallow Challenge:
The students were all in….
Look how patient they were!
These students hid their marshmallow.
These two played Rock, Paper, Scissors to pass the time.
These students covered their eyes so that they would not see the marshmallows.
Hooray! Everyone showed patience and earned a second marshmallow!
We then watched this fun video:
I then read aloud My Mouth is a Volcano by Julia Cook.
This book tells the story of a boy who interrupts. He just can not control the volcano in his mouth. When it is his special sharing day at school, the boy finally understands how frustrating it feels to be interrupted, and he learns to respectfully wait his turn. The students shared times when they had been interrupted and when their mouths had been a volcano! We tried to strategize ways we could wait patiently when we have something important to say but someone else is already speaking. Students agreed, it really takes a lot of patience!!
I am excited to blog about our second day of Literacy Workstations! This summer, I spent a lot of time reorganizing my Reading Centers. I wanted the students to have “more buy-in” and more choice. First, I renamed Reading Centers….. they are now Literacy Workstations. Next I made an organizational Smart Notebook for our Literacy Workstations time that is interactive and personalized for the students. This is what I came up with:
Each rotation lasts approximately 12-15 minutes. Once completed, I move the children’s pictures to their next center, and they begin the next rotation. Being that it is only Day 2 of Literacy Workstations, students are trying out each activity. Once they have a clear understanding of how each activity works, I will begin to add more activities to the independent parts of our Workstations. The activities include:
Through these workstations, every student receives differentiated instruction from both me and my Instructional Assistant. Many of the independent workstations are differentiated as well.
Students were listening to beginning sounds and then recording the sound that they heard.
Students listened to a book on CD. Listening to books on CD helps students build comprehension, phonics, and tracking skills.
Students found beginning sound puzzle pieces in our sensory table that they matched to the corresponding letters.
Students sounded out CVC (consonant-vowel-consonant) words and found the picture to match.
In another workstation, students used playdough to demonstrate number sense….not quite a literacy skill, but we were practicing how to use playdough as part of a Literacy Workstation!
I will post more as the students explore each of the activities I have developed for Literacy Workstations. We are off to a GREAT start!
We enjoyed our FIRST rotation of Morning Exploring activities today! These activities are designed to strengthen fine motor skills while reinforcing math and literacy concepts. They also encourage teamwork! I am just thrilled with how successful our first rotation was!
Take a look:
Students use their thumb and pointer finger to grasp very slippery water beads and sort them by color.
Working together, students place numbers in order from least to greatest. They use clips to clip the number cards in order.
Students cut along the curvy lines.
Using pop beads, students measure the pictures of school supplies to see how long each is. They record their answer.
Students roll two dice. They add the dice together. Using tongs, students place that number of frogs on the lily pads.
VERY CAREFULLY, students use a pushpin to make holes that follow each letter in their name.
Students use a hole punch to punch a specific number of holes on each page.
Pop beads are used again…but this time students use them to extend a pattern.
After Morning Exploring was complete for today, I overheard a student say, “I can’t wait to do this tomorrow!” These are words every teacher loves to hear!
Tomorrow is the big day- our official first day of school for 2019! The classroom is ready! The supplies are organized! The lessons are planned! Come one! Come all!
These first three days we will focus on building friendships and establishing a caring classroom community. Lower School teachers were fortunate to participate in an eight-hour Responsive Classroom training last week. We will begin many of the Responsive Classroom strategies and practices starting on our first day!
“Responsive Classroom is an evidence-based approach to teaching and learning for kindergarten through eighth grade that focuses on the strong link between academic success and social-emotional skills. We believe that a high-quality education for every student is built on the foundation of a safe, strong, and joyful school community.” (2016 Center for Responsive Schools, Inc) Look for another blog post soon with more details about Responsive Classroom.
My goal is to gather information on each student throughout this week so that I can begin differentiated instruction and groupings next week. This week students will be learning the ins and outs of the classroom as well as procedures for the many different parts of our exciting day. Through a lot of modeling and practice, these new kindergarteners will be set up for success.