Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Kinderland is an Adventure!

I must say that the first two weeks of kindergarten have been amazing, full of laughs, and exhausting. I knew that the switch from second to kindergarten would be a change of pace, but I had no idea how different it would be. We have been practicing, modeling, practicing some more, and then for extra measure, we practice again! What I am learning quickly is that I need to be flexible, over-prepared, and well rested. On the flip side, I don't think that I will ever leave this grade. I am exhausted, but in love with every little nugget in my care. I leave my class filled with giggles and true joy! This is what teaching is all about.

Here is a little peek at some of the fun things that we have done thus far.

I spy fun! They loved this fun activity that comes from Marsha at A Differentiated Kindergarten.

 This was our first art project this year. The students water colored and owl, cut and glued, and added cupcake liner eyes and oil pastel details. The owls are "perched" on their names. The kiddos loved this and it served as a great assessment tool. I knew in a very short time which students where going to need some additional fine motor intervention. The owls are connected by colorful clips to a wire that runs the length of my counter. It has turned out to be a great use of space. Check back tomorrow for the owl art freebie!

On the board above the owls is a fun letter project that we did using oil pastels and watercolor. The resist process was like magic to my nuggets. They loved it! This was inspired by Little Miss Kindergarten. You have to check out her fabulous art explorations for the littles.

 We have really been practicing our Daily 5 routines. They are doing a fabulous job! Something that I have found to be a valuable tool for read to self are our "space ships (hula hoops)." I place them prior to rotations. The students find one, sit inside, and turn on their "force field." The space ship runs on reading power, so they have to read the whole time.  When the chimes ring, they have landed and are ready for their next adventure (rotation). The kids have loved acting out this "story" and within two weeks are easily doing a 10 minute rotation. I will say that I still have one who likes to insist that he must battle the approaching aliens (with the hoop swirling around his neck), but we are working hard to make smart choices and fly our space ship correctly.

We also have been learning about counting and digging into The Very Hungry Caterpillar. To celebrate our counting skills we made these little caterpillar hats. The nuggets could not wait to wear them home! They were quite a hit. I will post this as a freebie tomorrow so check back!

 Here is a little peek at my parent quick guide that I handed out back to school night. I even filled it with QR codes.  My parents LOVED it!!

I will leave you with a recent giggle. There is a little girl in kinder named Candy. During our read-aloud time one of my little divas was fussing about not being able to see. I promptly told her to please stand up and sit next to Candy. The little diva looked at me with a terrified look on her face and said "I can't sit next to Candy! My mom told me that Candy will rot my teeth!" To which I replied "I promise you sweetheart, this Candy won't touch your teeth." Only in kinderland!!

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