The first week of my full-time LTO in Kindergarten is over and I'm ready to jump into my second week with both feet! This past week was great; the staff has been very supportive and friendly, the OT that had been covering the class was helpful in getting me settled, and the students have responded well to me. I've already made some adjustments to the day and they seem to be well received by both the children and my colleagues.

When the OT was leading the first two days, allowing me to see how the class runs, I kept an eye on the clock and noticed it was sometimes a little long. I changed up our morning routine a little so that they now have a question of the day to answer when they come to the carpet; this gives them something to do until O Canada comes on (which can take a good 10-15 mins). I also tweaked our calendar routine. I started using a Reggio Emilia-inspired calendar, similar to the one on this blog (for those of you not familiar with the term, Reggio Emilia is the birthplace, in Italy, of the play/inquiry-based learning movement). Not only does it make calendar more interactive for the students, in gives them an authentic reason to write and draw, and I can bundle the cards up for the teacher to see what we have been doing when she returns.

Now that carpet time has been reduced, they have had more time for free exploration at the learning centres. I have tried to keep them open-ended while still using them to create intentional opportunities for learning. For example, I am going to surprise my class by changing the "house" center into a Tim Hortons. I received a generous donation of cups, timbit boxes, trays, bags, napkins, and other supplies from a local Tim Horton's (Northfield and Weber, Waterloo) and I will be allowing the students to create the food out of playdough and make their own signs and menus. It will also be a good opportunity to talk about money and people in the community. In the paint center, I'm only going to have the primary colours out to see what they know about colour theory (mixing colours to create new colours). Last week we were exploring capacity in the water table, so I'm going to extend that this week by doing similar activities with rice at my math center. The water table this week will be full of snow instead, just to make things interesting!

With Valentine's day this week, I had to think of a neat craft for them to take home. I came across a great, easy recipe for chocolate playdough. It looks and smells just like chocolate, but don't eat it (too salty)! I'm going to let the kids help me make batches of it in small groups, then divide it up into baggies to take home with the recipe. While making the dough, they will have to measure and count (numeracy), as well as mix and knead the dough (fine motor). Afterward, they will have a great sensory activity they can take home to play with.

I'll have to take some pictures and write an update about how all of my great ideas go this week...hopefully they aren't a flop! There are just too many awesome things I want to try with this class, and I know that my 5 weeks...make that 4 now...will be done before I know it!

Your comment will be posted after it is approved.

Leave a Reply.