Well, today was our first full day of kindergarten. I was hoping that going 5 days last week (even though they were half days) would help out today. I have to say, the kids did great!!! They all came in like big kids. I only had to remind a couple of kids to get their folder. That was impressive. Since the last time I posted we have have accomplished a lot. After painting our mural, the kids brought in items from home and we put them with their color family (sorted by color). They did a great job. They were very excited about sharing their object with the other kids. After we finished, I had the kids go back to their table and draw a picture to represent the item they brought to school. I have to say, I have a few little artists in my room this year. After drawing, the kids put a nice little glue dot on the back of their picture and glued it to the correct color on the mural. They were very proud. Below are some pictures:
Today we started our colors, shapes, letter introduction, name cheers, centers, and math stations. Believe it or not, they were fabulous!! Today's color was read and our shape was a square. We sang the R-E-D song by Frog Street Press and practiced spelling red by tossing a red ball around a circle. We also took a picture of everyone wearing red to use in a class book. The letter introduction began with the book, The Letters are Lost! It is a great ABC book. After reading it, we had to look for the letter Aa. We talked about the sound and learned our motion that represents the sound. I use No More Letter of the Week to teach the sounds. I like the movement. I have found that the kids remember the pictures and movement and then can transfer that knowledge to other flashcards and letter and sound memory. Today we did name cheers for the children that begin with the letter A. We then added their picture to their name page in our friend book. They loved being cheerleaders
and using "tall voices" inside.
Our centers were very simple and consisted of small groups of kids going to our centers and doing retelling, puzzles, etc to practice working together, staying in their center, and rotating to the next center. Math Stations were with table partners. We rotated activities from table to table. Today we used our shape and color in math stations. They sponge painted a red square onto a red square construction paper. Another activity was tracing a coloring a square red. We also sorted a cup of skittles onto a Skittles Sorting Page and recorded our results on the paper. The last activity was making a scribble art red apple. The kids seemed to really enjoy math stations. This was most of our first full day of school! We had a blast and can't wait to see what's in store tomorrow.
We always start the year off with Brown Bear, Brown Bear by: Bill Martin, Jr and Eric Carle. The kids love this story because it is repetitive and easy for them to read along. I don't think they EVER get tired of it being read to them or them reading it to themselves. I started doing this unit about 5 years ago. My good friends and fellow teachers, Suzan Estes and Kristi Scott, had worked many hours trying to figure out how to turn the first days of school into more than just "being there". They searched the internet and came up with other ideas that are appropriate for beginning of the year k's. On the first day we read the story and search the school for the animals from the story. The kids have to look closely so we can find and color all of them. This is how we tour our school. We mark all the "important" places, or in other words, the places they will visit throughout kindergarten. After our tour, we go to our room and complete a brown bear color page while listening to the brown bear song by Greg and Steve. We pause as we come to a new color. The children have to raise the color in the air so I can make sure they know their colors- multi-tasking!! The second day we learn how to use our markers. We make a Brown Bear book to take home and retell while practicing the correct way to use our markers. The kids guess the order of the colors and animals (which we double check by re-reading the story as we go) and draw a circle and color it to represent each animal. After we finish we put our finger on each circle and retell the story together. They finish their books with a cool cover- a toilet paper roll with a bear they have colored brown and glued on. It's amazing how excited children can get over a toilet paper roll!! We also paint a mural. Yes, we actually paint on the 2nd or 3rd day of kindergarten every year!!! Believe it or not, they are so excited about getting to paint that they are usually neater now than later in the year. This is all we have accomplished with our Brown Bear unit since we are only in school until 11 this week. Tomorrow we are going to make our headbands using die-cut dots in the colors of the animals. This will allow the children to practice using glue and continue working on sequencing the story. The children will also bring in a toy/object from home tomorrow for us to sort by color and add to our mural. I will post those pictures tomorrow. I am going to post the pictures of the kids making their brown bear books and painting the mural. I hope everyone has a blessed day.