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Showing posts from October, 2010

Teaching Kindergarten: What's Working? Week #10 - Farm Fun!

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Week 10 is all about Farm Fun! This post includes recommendations for read aloud farm books, graphing our favorite animals, "Our School Farm," singable book, and a farm themed game.




Well, I am still out this week, but the doctor says I should be able to go back to work on Monday. Meanwhile, I missed our wonderful Farm Fun Day at school, and also our Halloween Fun Day- two special events that I greatly enjoy and was very sorry to have missed. But I am going to tell you this week about some fun things we did that led up to our unit on the Farm. By the way, on our Farm Fun Day, we had a “Party Pony and Farm Animal” company come to our school and bring their farm animals! All of the children got to ride a pony and have their picture taken on it, and also pet the farm animals. Then we had a class photo taken with the animals. Each Kindergarten class (there are five classes at my school!) gets a half an hour to spend with the animals, and parents are invited to come and take pict…

Teaching Kindergarten: What's Working? #9

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We are moving right along and are into week 9. Today I have two free Halloween downloads for practicing counting! I also share my calendar book, our Farm book and our farm bulletin boards, and a few favorite tools for helping develop fine motor skills.




1. Here is our Farm Bulletin Board! I love doing our farm unit!

This is what we do:

We study each animal, using non-fiction books and discussion. Then we make each craft project, and use them for the bulletin board. We enjoy them on our walls for the duration of the unit, and then after that, we take the down and put them into our Farm book. Then I use the book for a guided reading lesson with the kids. You can see how our "Singable Book" looks below! Everyone can be successful with it, because they can all sing it- so of course they can easily "read" all of the words. Some kids are really reading, and some are emergent readers. But no matter what, they all benefit!



These horses are part of our Farm Book. We first pu…

Teaching Kindergarten: What's Working? Week #8

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Welcome to week 8! Today I am sharing a fun Halloween themed game, how I am keeping my class motivated, how to teach your class to write sentences, and a great game for practicing CVC words.



Here we go!


1. Halloween Boo! Game




There is another game that I came up with years ago, but never could give away nor sell, since I didn’t own the artwork on it. But, this summer I tried to catch up on the missing pieces of artwork on some of these “old reliable” games that I have been using year after year to make drill and practice a little bit more fun, and I actually did manage to get it all completed! I also just added some cards to this game that are like the whole group comparing sets cards, but with a Halloween theme, so this will also provide further reinforcement on comparing sets. Basically, you can play this game with either the sight word cards, the alphabet cards, or the numbers and comparing sets cards, so there is a lot of flexibility built into it. There is also a set of blank car…

Teaching Kindergarten: What's Working? Week #7

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1.  We LOVE the Alphabet Action song!
My class this year is fun to teach because they seem to just LOVE the songs!  And this year, they are very enthusiastic about the Alphabet Action song, in particular, from the Letters and Sounds DVD.  They also constantly request to sing the Number 20 song from Jumpin’ Numbers Vol. 2, and Zero the Hero song from the Number Jumble DVD!




Someone emailed me this week and asked me if I thought her class of exceptional three year olds might respond well to the Singable Songs for Letters and Sounds DVD.  I had to answer that I thought that it would!  I recently received a few little video clips of a twenty month old little girl named Amelia who has been “obsessing” over the Alphabet Action song on this very DVD, insisting on watching it and dancing along several times a day.  Her mother wanted me to see how cute she was as she was enjoying performing the song in her little diapered bottom!  You can view some of these video clips on my Facebook page.  The…

Teaching Kindergarten: What's Working? Week #6

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Welcome to week 6! I hope everyone is having a great year so far. Here is what's working for me on week #6.

1.  Large Rhyming Words Practice Cards and Bingo Game




Producing rhyming words is always something that is not very much fun to practice, but it is something that just has to be done!  Since I teach at a Title One school, many of the children come from homes where there are few books to read or literacy activities going on.  So we have to fill in the gaps as best we can.  One thing that is helping me this year is a new set of rhyming words practice cards and a matching bingo game that I made over the summer.

This is how it works:  You take the large cards and put them into a gallon size zip lock bag.  Then take a dark piece of 12 x 18” construction paper and fold it in half, and then insert it into the bag so that it is covering up the pictures of the rhyming words.  The cards are printed with one picture above the other, so if you pull the paper up halfway, the children will …