I blame the Super Harvest Blood Eclipse Moon….

It’s been a week since my last post. Over a week actually. Last week was cRaZy… not just in the classroom, but outside the classroom, and in my mind. I blame the moon. The supermoon, harvest moon, lunar eclipse aka “blood moon”…and everything else powerful that it is. It caused chaos in my classroom and it caused me to be even more exhausted than usual. Forgive me for not blogging. However- I DID plan for last week- so I have my plans to look back on, which will be super helpful in the future. At a quick glance… things seemed to have gone as planned, and fairly well. It’s really all about patience and persistence, which I think I’m pretty good at 😉

As far as this week goes- we’re really starting to get in to the “good stuff”. For the most part they have the routines and such down- still needs reminders, but they are doing very well for the 5th week of school. We have started math stations (work with teacher, work with a buddy, work by myself). Tweaking this still- tomorrow I think I will set up stations within each station. So, work with a buddy will have 3 buddy games- they can do 1, 2, or 3 depending on what time allows for. Work by myself will have 3 or 4 activities, and once they complete one, then they can move on to the next one. I’m not sure yet- still messing around with this! 🙂 The kids are great though- they don’t mind all of the “craziness” that comes along with the new teacher trying new things every 10 minutes! I really do have a great group.

We also started Daily 5- read to self. We went over how to treat a book, how to read a book (3 ways!) and how to choose a good book- or a “good fit” book (the shoe lesson – my favorite!!) Today we started to build our stamina- our goal was to sit and do read to self for 3 minutes- we made it to 4 minutes and 46 seconds!! I was SO excited. I can’t wait to see how they do tomorrow 🙂

We are working our way through the alphabet. I have not started Houghton Mifflin yet- I think I will next week. The rest of this week is just way to packed with things to do!!

I will do my best to blog again THIS week. I have a bunch of things due Thursday- goals, sub plans, website update….putting student data on our school documentation site, and figuring out the new assessment system that I’m piloting this year. YIKES! About to pull out my hair. For now though, I’m off to relax until bed time. Because we teachers DO need that 😉

~Miss Sementelli

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Close call…

I almost, ALMOST, made it two days into a new week without blogging about the end of last week and giving you a sneak peek in to this week. Granted, it’s Monday, and I should’ve blogged over the weekend- but hey, at least I lesson planned?

Thursday- Hh day. Hat day! The kiddos got to wear hats to school. We saw some baseball caps, and some really cool/funky hats as well! I love that they are feeling comfortable and confident enough to be silly and fun and express themselves as they wish to. It makes me feel like I’m doing my job not only teaching them the academic piece, but also the social and self awareness piece!

On Thursday I did a “Coloring lesson”. We practiced our stamina in regards to coloring- they made 2 minutes the first time, 5 seconds the second time (LOL?!) and then 58 seconds the third time. I was using the phrase “I’m done!” either yelled out, or said even with a raised hand. As soon as someone said those two words I stopped the time. Before we began, I modeled what a picture should look like now that we’re in kindergarten. I scribbled on one page, with one color, and got a lot of “NOOOOOOO!!!s” so we talked about what I was doing “wrong” and what I could do better; the consensus was that I needed more than one color and I needed to “actually draw something”. So, the next picture I drew I used two colors, made a house and a person then said “I’m done!” I got a lot of “NOs” again and so we discussed again what I could do to make it better. They gave so many great ideas such as using MORE colors, adding grass, a sky, clouds, a butterfly/birds, a sun, a tree with apples on it, a car in a driveway, the key to my house- you get the point, they knew I needed details. So, I gave them the task of coloring a picture and seeing how long they could last before they truly thought they were done. When they hit the 2 minute mark, the coloring was so-so. Lots of only two colored pictures, minimal details, still some scribbling.. the 5 second time a kid literally drew a circle and said he was done…not sure if he was fooling around or serious, because, lets face it, 5 year olds can be tricky. The 58 second time was a little better- I saw a little girl in some grass with a sky and a sun. We’re getting somewhere. (Planning on doing this lesson again next week!)

Friday- HALF DAY. Ii DAY. ICE CREAM DAY. Why did I decide to do that? Oh well. We made it work. Messy- but yummy, and hey, it was Friday, so who cares if all we did was morning meeting, our alphabet page, our first library gig, and then some ice cream with a read aloud. I actually think I squeezed the word wall in there as well, but my memory is fading from me. I’m just glad I survived our PD time that afternoon!

Monday (ahem- TODAY!)- Jj day. I must say- this day was much more successful than I expected. I made my J day “jeopardy day” where I made a jeopardy game that had questions about classmates (finding them by only their names… surprisingly enough some kiddos still don’t know some of the other kiddos so I think this was GREAT for that!), questions about the letters and their sound- which gave me great insight as to where they may be (quick insight, obviously. But assessing is assessing!), and questions about the school/classroom rules. They earned beads for each correct answer- 1 bead for the classmate questions, 2 beads for the letter questions, and 3 beads for the rules questions. This actually went so well and I definitely plan on using the jeopardy game more in the future!! 🙂

I must say- I had planned to start Daily 5 today but I totally spaced on the fact that Mrs. Lakeman was coming in to do a lesson with them. Needless to say we didn’t get coloring lesson or Daily 5 lesson in- good thing it’s only Monday! 😉

For the rest of the week I actually plan to start Daily 5, Writing Workshop (easing in to it, obviously) AND math! Phew- maybe- we’ll see!

OH AND I HAVE MY FIRST FIELD TRIP AS A TEACHER!! YES I AM SO EXCITED!!

Blog again later this week!

~Miss Sementelli

Happy Hump Day!

It’s the first Wednesday of the first full week of school! Though, I’m not sure if you can really call it a “full week” considering we only have the kiddos for half of the day on Friday, the other half is a professional development day though, so I’m going to consider it a full week 😉

Monday sure felt like a Monday- but it went brilliantly well! I can’t even believe how quickly these kiddos are picking up on little things and big things through routines. I had them do everything on their own this morning- no holding hands, not holding backpacks as they took out their yellow take home folder, no asking them if they had hot or cold lunch- if they had a lunch from home they were to put it against the wall- I DID however check to make sure their lunchbox actually had substance in it and not just crackers and a juice box (aka SNACK!). They were introduced to the lunch clip chart where they were to take their number clip and put it either on the yellow “home lunch”  picture or the orange “school lunch” picture. They did pretty well with this actually! I am glad because it will make my life counting lunches SO much easier!!

Monday was “Ee” day- Explore with Math Manipulatives day! I thought this would be another day of herding cats around a classroom as I introduced math stations but by golly THEY DID WONDERFUL. I can’t even believe it. I didn’t pull a single strand of hair out, though I did lose my breath holding it just waiting for something or someone to go wrong. I modeled 4 different stations (pattern block pictures, tracing/writing numbers in smart pals, grouping cubes by 5s with a single color, and groups counting bears by a number they chose from a box (#s 1-20). I seriously still can’t believe there was no crying, screaming, throwing, anything- nothing. They used them CORRECTLY and for the WHOLE 8 MINUTES! I was completely, happily, and utterly surprised at how well this went. I patted myself on the back, brushed my fingernails across my shoulders and gave myself a little wink in the mirror for getting 21 kindergartners to sit, pay attention, stay engaged, and ENJOY what they were doing for 4 different stations, each lasting 8 minutes. OH and the other best part? The transitions were PURE GOLD. If anyone gave medals to 5 year olds for going from one place to another, my kids would’ve taken home that gold medal. Seriously. I explained where each table would move to next (ie. table 1 to table 2, table 2 to table 3, table 3 to table 4, and table 4 to table 1), asked them to point to the table they were going to, and then had them stand up, push in their chairs, and move to that next station. It was like a group of 30 year old mothers pushing their kids stroller through a park in unison. Amazing. All 4 times. Amazing.

Tuesday: “Ff” day- Favorite toy day! The kiddos could bring in their favorite toy- as long as it could fit in their bag. Then they got to share it- this was great 🙂 Even my more shy students got up and shared BY THEMSELVES (I’m referring to twins that I have that are inseparable- I gave them the choice of coming up to share together because they had the same toy and got it for the same reason, and they decided to share separately, and they did it loud and proud and I almost cried because it means I’ve created an environment where they feel safe, comfortable, and happy to communicate with their peers and not just themselves.

Tuesday I also introduced our Word Wall. I explained what it was, what we would do with it, and then we went through the alphabet- saying the letter, then giving the sound. For a first time- it went pretty well! 🙂

Wednesday- Finally! I’m catching up! Today, Wednesday, was “Gg” day- Game day!! I debated on doing educational games (math games or something similar like an alphabet matching game) or “fun” games like tag, relay races, and duck duck goose. The weather was beautiful and I wanted to get them outside so I decided on the fun games (after math stations though, of course!) We did a relay race, where we also talked about good sportsmanship and not being too mean of a winner or too sore of a loser. The kids did great- they honestly didn’t even know who won or lost (even though it was very clear- it’s like their minds don’t care- they don’t notice it- they’re only having fun. Why does that ever change? Think of how much greater adult life would be if our social brains worked like they did when we were 5, 6, 7….)

We did more work with the word wall- I went a little more “in depth” with it- introducing the vowels- “old macdonald had a farm…A, E, I, O UUUUUUU!” and introducing what a “heart word” is – “a heart word is a word you know how to spell by heart” (aka sight words! explained the different between a word like a name and a word such as “a” and “I” that are words we need to know how to spell without getting help from a teacher or a book or a word wall- we just need to KNOW how to spell it by HEART (hence “heart” word- hehe).

I also read the book “The Day the Crayons Quit” today- we talked about the colors and what they could represent in our pictures. Tomorrow I will be doing a lesson that I’m stealing from Mrs. Mattice (the other kindergarten teacher at school- and the mother of one of my kiddos! ;)). She thought up of a wonderful way to get students to really “focus” on their drawing/coloring and creating a purpose rather than just scribbling- we will see how it goes tomorrow!

I really hope to FINALLY get my student portraits done tomorrow. I’ve been wanting to do these for a week now- the students will draw themselves and then I will be putting them out on the hallway bulletin board. They will each come up with one thing they want to learn this year and that will go in a little speech bubble next to their self portrait. The portraits will then go in a folder, and I hope to have them draw a self portrait once a month from now until the end of the school year- then I will send it home for the parents 🙂 (Idea I stole from a teacher down in Old Orchard!)

I also hope to do my “wrinkled heart” lesson tomorrow, or at least on Friday. I think it’s super important to get that done ASAP- although, I haven’t really had any “hurt feelings” (yet) in my class. But- let’s prevent them! 🙂

*BIG SIGH* it feels so good to finally be caught up with the school year! My hope from now on is to blog twice a week- once on Wednesday to review days Monday-Wednesday and then again on either Friday/Saturday/Sunday to review Thursday/Friday and maybe give a little insight as to what is to come in the next week- that way when I blog again that Wednesday I can see if I accomplished what I had wanted to or if something changed (and why it changed). If you’re reading this, and you’re a friend, please remind me politely to update my blog. Which reminds me- we worked on our manners all week- they’re almost please and thank-you machines! Practice, practice, practice- no snack until I hear those magic words! 😉

~Miss Sementelli

Oops…

True to form… a whole week went by and I didn’t blog; just like I told you would happen! Maybe I will set an alarm twice a week that will remind me to do this. It just gets so crazy!! So, here goes nothing… all of last week, in one, probably too long, post:

Tuesday: Tuesday kicked off the week after a nice, much needed 3-day weekend. The kiddos came back and were ready to learn- didn’t even skip a beat, really! We reviewed what little routines we had laid out, and from there on it was time to set sails for learning! Over the summer I decided I wanted to kick off the school year with 26 days of ABCs! Each day, for the first 26 days of school, we would learn a letter of the alphabet. That day would be dedicated to that specific letter. Even though the previous Thursday had been the “official” first day of school- I had decided against starting on the ACTUAL day- I wanted to spend those first two days focusing on routines, classroom and school wide rules, and just getting them settled in to school mode. SO- Tuesday became the unofficial start of school with the start of the alphabet- the letter “Aa”. “Aa” day was “All About Me” day- the students were encouraged to bring in one thing that described themselves. For example, if they liked to play sports, they could bring in a soccer ball or a trophy they had won. If they liked to dance, maybe bring in their favorite c.d. or a dance costume. I had asked parents to stay away from things like their “favorite toy” because that was going to come later (can you guess what letter? ;)) This worked out great! I had almost every student bring something in (some really clever things, too!) and they did very will sharing their items with their classmates. Along with the “All About Me” activity we also did the first page to our ABC craft book- the letter “A” was for apple, and we made apple pictures!

Tuesday wasn’t only letter “Aa” day; we also introduced a lot of new fun things in the classroom- for example, the calendar (we went over how we would talk about the days of the week, months of the year, and pattern on the calendar cards, as well as the weather, and we would keep track of how many days we have been in school. I also introduced a math activity called “Roll and Cover”- involves dice and a paper sheet that has the numbers 1-6 on it- whatever number they rolled they had to cover up with a sticker on their paper. Once the paper was full, they got to color it.

Tuesday also led us in to the discussion about classroom behavior/classroom manners. I read the book “David Goes to School” and we made a chart about “What Makes a Good Student”. This lesson actually went pretty well! However, I did forget to make the “David’s” with them, which I think would have been fun- I remember doing it last year and the kids came up with some seriously funny things (I’m pretty sure one of them was “don’t stick gum in other people’s hair”). So- FYI MISS SEMENTELLI- NEXT YEAR MAKE THE DAVID’S! 🙂

Wednesday: “Bb” day. Bubbles day. A open house I gave each of my kiddos a tube of bubbles with the saying “I have been bubbling with excitement to meet you”. 😉 I sent home a letter the night before asking for the kids to bring their bubbles back in to have for bubbles day- all but maybe 2 remembered (and yes- I did have back up just in case!) Bubbles day is just what you’d expect- we played with our bubbles for about 15 minutes- then I let them either keep blowing bubbles or go play on the playground for the last 5 minutes of our morning recess time. (For the first couple weeks of school I give them an extra recess in the morning- usually right after snack time. It lasts about 10-15 minutes.) Wednesday also brought about the introduction to pattern blocks! We went over the different pattern blocks, and then I showed them how to graph. I then gave each student a handful of pattern blocks and they had to graph what they were given- most understood and did it correctly! The others at least stayed busy with the blocks and the graph and didn’t give up/move around/etc.

Wednesday was also the day I introduced BRAIN BREAKS! If you’re a teacher in grades K-2 especially and you don’t know about Go Noodle (specifically POPSICO with the KooKoo brothers) then you’re seriously missing out on a much needed movement/giggle break. Go Noodle has saved my days many, many times. So, I introduced about 15 minutes worth of brain breaks- the kids LOVED it. I swear they could do brain breaks all day and be completely content.

On Tuesday we made the poster “How to be a Good Student”, and Wednesday we made a poster “How to be a Good Teacher”. I read the book “Teachers are for Reading Stories” and then we discussed the things teachers do or help you with in a school. We then put it on a poster- this was more for me to get a feeling of what and how they would like me to be with them. It was also to show them that it’s not only the students who need “guidelines” or “rules”- but teacher’s too!

Thursday: “Cc” day! COLORING DAY! Who wouldn’t want to be around this day? Only catch- before we actually got to coloring I introduced our “coloring rubric”- a very quick overview of what I expect their coloring to get to. A scale of 1-4, a 1 being all one color, just scribbling, a 2 being at least 2 colors, but still scribbling, a 3 being more than 3 colors and having more of a purpose with coloring (still very much outside the lines but there is evidence of purposeful coloring and a 4 being more than 3 colors and staying carefully inside the lines (though we said it was ok to be outside of the lines a little bit). This went pretty well- it will definitely be something I refer to all year. I will soon introduce the other coloring rubric that will be more along the lines of “you’re not done unless it has this, this, this, and this” (I’ll post about it when I do it!)

Thursday we also made a “A Good Classmate.. Is, Does, Says, and Is Not” poster- so we have now covered what makes them as an individual a good student, what makes me as their teacher a good teacher, and what makes them as a class together good classmates (friends) to each other. Can’t wait to do my “wrinkled heart” lesson.

On Thursday’s we do not have any specials, so our afternoon is pretty long- Mrs. Cooper and Mrs. Davis to the rescue! We will be doing First Grade Buddies right after recess (this includes a read aloud, brain break, and once we get in to the swing of things- some math time with our bigger buddies!) We will have Fourth Grade Buddies at 2pm and they will be reading with a bigger buddy for a half hour every Thursday! I am so excited- I love pairing up my younger kiddos with some older kids- it’s fun to watch them interact and it’s a great way for the younger kids to make older friends to help them when a teacher may not be around.

Friday: “Dd” day! Dancing day! Brain breaks 3-4 at a time every hour-ish. So much fun!! We also met our Third Grade Buddies! Mrs. Knowlton’s class will be with us for an hour every Friday and we will dedicate this buddy time to SCIENCE EXPERIMENTS! I can’t wait 🙂

So that was last week in a quick overview. I really hope to not miss a WHOLE week again- though it is Wednesday, September 16th right now as I’m writing this- and guess what- I have yet to start blogging about the current week I’m in. To start tonight, or to wait… I guess just keep your eyes peeled 😉

~Miss Sementelli

Day #2

Friday September 4 was the second day of school- it went surprisingly well! The kids came in off the playground and sat at their seats. I was able to give them their play dough and take one table at a time to put their things away. I reminded them about where to put their backpacks and showed them where to put their yellow folders. Once all of them had put their things away, I was able to look through each folder, taking out paperwork and notes, while the kids still sat pretty quietly and played nicely. I was done with folders by 8:45 and by 8:55 we were all on the rug ready to start our morning! The night before I had numbered the mats so the children knew where to sit- this worked out much better.

I read the book First Day Jitters and discussed with them how everyone is nervous on the first couple days of school- even the teachers! We then played another name game- this time I only had TWO kids (as opposed to over half of my class) not want to participate. This game was “hickety-pickety bumblebee” where they had to yell their name, whisper their name, then mouth their name. They LOVED it (probably because they got to yell in class).

After the name game we reviewed snack rules and I dismissed them to get their things ready for snack. After snack, we went outside for about 20 minutes- it was BEAUTIFUL. After about 12 minutes I called them over to line up- then for the next 8-10 minutes we practiced lining up in line number order. I had them line up, then look at who they were in front of and behind, then I had them run around for 30 seconds to get all mixed up, and when I called them back over they had to put themselves back in order- theu did fairly well! After 3 or 4 times of this we made our way back inside. They sat at their seats, I called one quiet table at a time to get a drink and then they were to make a circle on the rug.

I explained to them that every morning we would have “morning meeting” where we would do calendar, weather, share time, and then move on to math. We skipped everything except math today. I showed them the game called “Roll and Cover”. I had originally planned on them using little foam dots to cover the numbers that they rolled, but one of my kiddos asked if they could used stickers instead- what a GREAT idea! So I explained the roll and cover game, demonstrated how to roll the dice and how to use ONE sticker to cover the number that they roll on their paper and then sent them off. They did WONDERFUL! Some finished more quickly than others- and I just let them color their paper when they were done which I think will work just fine!

After that I took advantage of having my Ed Tech in their and we went in to the cafeteria to get assigned seats. Once those were established, we went back in to the room and I did a read aloud on lunch time behaviors. We discussed it and made a list as a class that I wrote down on a big piece of paper. My intention was for all of us to sign it- but we came up with so many great rules that there wasn’t enough room. After this I got them in line and ready for lunch!

When they came in from recess I had a coloring page at their seats and the quiet time music playing. I reminded them what quiet time was and what it looked like/sounded like. They did fairly well.

After quiet time I had them down on the mats and showed them a project we were going to do. It was an activity to get then used to using glue sticks. I had bright colored background paper for them, and their task was to cut pieces of tissue paper and glue it to the background paper. They LOVED this!! And they did SO well with it!! I was so happy with how this project turned out. 🙂

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We started cleaning up and then got called down to the assembly- whoops! I had forgotten ALL about it! I got them in line and quickly went over some assembly rules! For not having any practice, and for hearing the rules quickly only minutes beforehand- they did pretty well!

When we got back from the assembly we finished cleaning up and then I put out the blocks, leggos, and puzzles. They could play at any of the stations, and I called students to bring me their backpacks to get ready to go home. This went pretty smoothly 🙂

What a well deserved 3 day weekend after those 2 hectic but wonderful days 🙂

~Miss Sementelli

Happy First Day of Kindergarten!

Did I or did I not mention that I was an awful blogger? I did. (See previous posts). This proves it. I was supposed to blog about the last 10 days of school- in June. I didn’t. Probably because as soon as school was over I was in summer vacation mode! Now, that doesn’t mean I didn’t spend some time out of my days thinking about my kiddos, how they were doing, what they were doing, etc., but…I was barely near a computer, and the last thing I felt like doing was staring at a screen blogging. Plus, I kind of forgot….oops.

Well, here goes nothing! Today, August 3, 2015, was the first day of my second year of teaching kindergarten. It was absolutely nothing like I remembered- probably because I don’t remember my first day of teaching- almost at all. It’s a blur. A fun, exciting, incredible, horrifying, beautiful blur. Today was overwhelming, crazy, hectic, stressful, and amazing. I met all 21 shining faces. Yes- 21. And ALL of them showed up today. 🙂 As beautifully awful as today was, the 21 faces that looked at me with such happiness made me put aside the craziness of the day and enjoy the fact that these innocent little beings were excited to just BE there. They were excited to just simply be present in a place where they can learn, grow, bond, and have something to look forward to every day. They were excited to listen to me and to learn from me. Their faces were hopeful, and those faces are what are going to keep me going through these next couple of horrifically wonderful weeks. They want me, they need me, and I will be their guidance, friend, and most importantly, their teacher, for the next 10 months.

Now to get down to the real reason I started this blog. I NEED to write things down. I need to remember the things I did over the years- the things that worked, the things that didn’t work, the things I should tweak, etc. Let’s start with last night- open house. It went SO well. Minus one thing- it was beyond chaotic. I loved the fact that I had the 4 most important papers out with pens for them to fill out right then and there. I loved the child survey I gave to get feedback on their child and their academic, social, and family behavior. I loved the fact that I could mingle, answer questions, meet families, etc. What I didn’t love- the fact that the children were running crazy around the room! Taking things out of boxes and off of shelves to play with- drawing all over the tables (my fault for leaving crayons out….) and just all around being slightly destructive, disruptive, and, well.. naughty (when parents turn their heads….). I tried brainstorming ideas to tweak it for next year.. I thought about a read aloud, then quickly realized that that would tie me up and make me unavailable to the parents to answer any questions. My dad offered to hold story time next year…hmmm…

As for today- I think it went as well as it could have. I had the kiddos come in from outside, find their seats, and sit down with their back packs. I taught them “class/yes” RIGHT off- this worked WONDERFULLY. They understood that when I said “class class” they were to stop whatever they were doing, drop anything that was in their hands, find my eyes, and respond with “yes yes”. After they “mastered” that piece, I added the “hands and eyes” to which they respond “yes Miss Sementelli”. They knew that this meant I had something of importance to tell them, which was super helpful throughout the day when things got too hectic and I needed to calm (hah) it down. After this, I showed them where their jackets/bags were to go, where their cubbies were, and where their back packs were. I explained that I was going to call them up by table numbers, at which point they would go over to Mrs. Turner (thank God for Mrs. Turner!) and she would go through the contents of their back packs, label them, and send them off to put their things away while I took care of paperwork. The kiddos who were not with myself or Mrs. Turner were contently playing with play dough at their seats. This worked well! It took a little while (as you can imagine) and I had a few get restless and antsy, so I may come up with a second idea for next year, but up until that point I didn’t really have any complaints as to how things were going.

After we got their backpacks situated, I called them down to the mats to do a name game activity- which went horribly. I forgot how shy they can be- and all they had to do was say their name and their favorite color! I ended up introducing over half of my class and made the mistake of letting them guess each others favorite colors. I’m not really sure what I could do differently next time- this was probably one of the easiest name games I found and besides just not introducing them at all, I don’t know what I could’ve done to prevent embarrassment or nerves.

Then I taught them about snack time- we discussed what snack time should look like/sound like- I showed them how to get ready for snack by washing their hands, getting a paper towel and putting it at their seat, and then getting their snack. I told them about the school healthy snack. All in all that went pretty well- we’ll work on not getting up to throw things away until the end of snack- bonus though, they WANT to clean up! 😉

By the end of snack, 10 minutes on the playground was MUCH needed! We lined up in line number order- we talked about “HALLS” and how they should look and sound in the hallways, we walked by the front office, the cafeteria line, and where they would eat lunch. NOTE TO SELF- next time- assign them seats THEN for lunch. Demonstrate how to sit, act, etc. BEFORE lunch. Ha.ha.

Then we PLAYED!

Read aloud- Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten. I introduced Daily 5- YES on the FIRST day of school! Very quickly, though. I just talked about 3 different ways to read a book- reading the words, reading the pictures, retelling the story. Today, I read the words. Side note- I did not go over how to act during a read aloud. We went over how to sit criss cross, and we quickly went over the 5 rules from whole brain teaching, but other than that- nothing. And they did FABULOUS. However, I will note that that is probably a teaching point I should address before the read aloud next time around!

After the read aloud we briefly went over lunch and recess rules- we will go over those more in depth tomorrow where we will all sign a “contract” stating that we will be on our best behavior in the lunch room and on the playground.

I let them have free play for about 15 minutes before lunch. Leggos or coloring! (BATHROOM BREAKS!)

LUNCH/RECESS- (C-H-A-O-S 🙂 )

I like my quiet time. I never really seem to get it throughout the day. So I like to make it a little game after recess. I introduced quiet time- I told them it’s 10 minutes of no talking, only doing some sort of task independently and quietly. Today, that task was coloring. We went over what coloring looked like/didn’t look like (I demonstrated) then I sent them off.

10 minutes of pretty much SILENCE (needless to say I was impressed!)

In preparation for the next 26 days of school where we will be doing a LOT of crafts- I did a scissors lesson with them- it went pretty well! No complaints, other than to have something to do for those who finish quickly- today I just had them color again- which may or may not have been the best idea (I think they may have been sick of coloring by then…)

Of course the second time I was going to take them out it RAINED. So I did another read aloud- which actually worked out perfectly to bring the day to a nice closure. I read “The Night Before Kindergarten” and after we discussed how that book and the book I had read that morning were similar. We then did a drawing that depicted one thing they did to get ready for kindergarten. I gave the example for brushing my teeth and then we mentioned MANY other things we did to get ready- but how many “brushed my teeth” do you think I got? 😉 (over half- hehe)

The end of the day actually went pretty smoothy! I had them working on their picture/coloring until I called their table- when I called their table I had them get their backpacks and then come over to me. I was at the mailboxes and showed them that every day they will take their yellow folder home. When they were done with me, I had them place their backpack at their seat and then they could choose between leggos, blocks, or puzzles!

From there it was all a waiting game until the last bus was called! I’d say it was a successful day- no one went home crying and hating me (or any of their classmates) and I made it through without throwing up!

To say I’m excited for a 3 day weekend would be an understatement though. However- I will go through the day tomorrow with a smile on my face 🙂

Until next time! (Hopefully tomorrow, or Sunday…but let’s face it- probably Monday.)

~Miss Sementelli