Sunday, September 7, 2014

Our first week

The kindergarteners did such a great job this week! We learned lots of new routines, new names and new activities. Here are some highlights.

First Day Feelings
We read the book The Kissing Hand, about a raccoon named Chester who is very nervous to start school. Then we talked about all the feelings a kindergartener can have on the first day of school! Afterwards, we made a class book about which feelings we had. Most of the kids felt excited, with a few nervous feelings in there.

Free Choice
This is the best time of the day for kindergarteners (with the exception of recess I suppose)! Play is such an important part of a five- and six-year-old's day. They get 20-30 minutes a day of unstructured play in the classroom, so they can explore all the areas of the room - the block area, dramatic play, art table, puppets, math toys, puzzles, etc. This is a time for kids to learn to play together. It's also a time for me to observe and guide their social interactions, notice what they are interested in, and generally have fun with them!

Math Choice
We also learned a new math activity called Math Choice. Math Choice is every Friday. This is a time when I pull out lots of math materials that the kids can manipulate, build with, and explore. They get to choose which items they use, and they work cooperatively in groups of four. This was a very popular activity this week! I should mention that our assistant teacher, Ms. Breuer, leads a rousing game of Uno with the kids during this time too!

Shared Writing
Each week we will compose a shared writing piece together, in which kindergarteners "share the pen" with me. Usually we will come up with a sentence as a class, and I will choose several students to help sound out words and write them on the chart paper. This week's shared writing was a letter to families highlighting a few other things we did this week.

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