Thursday, September 22, 2016

Reading Workshop Routines

Reading Workshop can be one of those tricky curriculums to use in your classroom.  When I first started workshop, I wasn't a fan.  However, with time I have really grown to love it!

I start by introducing what the students should do vs. what the teacher should do during reading.  We make this chart together and discuss our roles.  I think it is a great way for them to also see that I'm not just walking around - I am busy too!

Then, we discuss the routine to workshop.  We start by singing a little song and gathering on the rug in our reading spots.  Then, I teach the lesson, we do a part together, and then the students go off to independently read and practice the skill on their own.  Once they have built their reading stamina, they read independently for at least 20 minutes.  When the time is up, they go to their partner, talk about the skill they practiced, and then we clean up and meet back on the rug for share time. 

Here you can see one of my students reading and marking WOW pages with his post-it notes. Each student picks a reading spot in the room (anywhere they want) and they go there each day. 

She is looking at her books, reading, and thinking.  Each student is also given an exit slip where they record something to go with the lesson.  This helps me see whether the students understood what was taught.  It it difficult for me to get around to each student, so I use their exit slips to check for student understanding.
I mark whether they understood on my checklist and then the students put their paper in their mailbox. They bring their paper to me after the clean up from working with their partner and before they go back to the rug for share time.
During independent reading time, I typically pull small groups and read with those students.  I pull students that are the same ability level. 

Each student has their own book bin.  You can see what is placed inside below!

Each bin has a poetry folder.  We learn a new poem each week during morning meeting, and students put their poem in their folder.  This is something they know how to read and can read it during independent reading time. 

Each bin also has a reading folder.  This is where we store resource pages or activities.  Sometimes they are working on something that takes a few days to complete, so they place the papers in this folder. 

Each bin has a small bag filled with some materials.  Each student gets a yellow and black marker (use it to mark certain things when writing on our exit slips or writing on post-it notes), post-it notes, pencil, eraser, and a craft stick to use for pointing to each word.  They also get a clipboard to write on because students can sit anywhere in the room when they read.  

I hope this gives you a better idea of what workshop is like in Kindergarten.  Happy reading!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Quick Counting Activity

We did a quick, fun math activity!  It was easy prep, and the kids loved it!

I used this cute Count the Monkey book and read it to the class first.  It's a great interactive book where the kids get to count with me while I read.

Then, I grab gallon ziplock bags and write a number on each bag (1-10).  I pair the students with their math partners and they walk around the classroom filling the bag with items.  They place the number of items in the bag that match the number on the bag. 

Here some of the kids are searching for items to place in the bag.  My only rule is that they must put the items back where they found them. 

Look at that sweet face!  She was so excited when she got the right amount of items to match the number on the bag. 

I hope you enjoy this fun way to learn numbers and practice counting!  When students were done, we gathered on the rug and they practiced counting out each item. 
This is a great way to quickly assess students' number knowledge as well. 

Happy counting!

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom

I LOVE the book Chicka, Chicka Boom Boom!  It is a great beginning of the year book and helps review the letters in the alphabet. 

These are our completed chicka trees.  We practice writing our names, fine motor skills, cutting, glueing, and counting!

We love making messes on the floor and getting our hands dirty. :]

Here is how we made our Chicka trees so you can make them too!

We take a rectangular piece of brown construction paper and cut the edges off.  I cut all the pieces to the appropriate size for the kids so they don't have to take a large sheet and make it small.  

I tell the kids to cut the sharpies.  They love it!  We cut off each edge just a little bit. 

Then, we take a rectangular piece of green paper and cut the sharpies. 

We do all four sides, and we cut a decent size off the corner so we can make it look like a palm tree. 

All four sides are complete and it looks like a diamond (kind-of!). 

Then, we round the edges.

Finally, we take all the pieces and glue them together on a sheet of construction paper.  We then add our names.  I typed them on the computer and the kids cut them out and glued them in order.  We also counted how many letters were in our names and wrote it on the piece of paper and glued it to our chicka tree.

We had so much fun practicing our names, making chicka trees, and reading a fun book!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Name Mosaics

One of my favorite things to do at the beginning of the year is have my students create name mosaics!  They are given small pieces of colored construction paper.  They tear them into teeny tiny pieces, and then glue them to the letters of their name. They practice fine motor skills and practice the letters in their name.

We practice the colors of the rainbow by placing them in order of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple.

Then, as a class we practice reading each child's name, finding the first letter of their name, we say it a few times, and then we post it on our word wall.  We use our word wall to help us spell and find words we know!

We will add sight words to our word wall soon.  These are our first words up in our room, and the kids love it!