Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Swing of Things

Kindergarten teachers....

Am I the only one that forgets how HARD the first few days of school are???

This really isn't my first rodeo! You would think by now I would have the back-to-school procedures under control. Seriously, though, I think if you teach Kindergarten, God gives you a special brain that magically erases the memory of the first few days of school. Because if he didn't... there would be no Kindergarten teachers.

I just forget that in May, when the last bell rings, and 18 ready-to-go-to-first-grade children walk out of my room....

Someone had taught them to walk in that straight line.
Someone had taught them to open their milk carton, ketchup packets, and how to peel their bananas.
Someone had taught them how to sit in their chair and raise their hand.
Someone had taught them to raise their hand before they yelled out what they had for dinner, what their dog's name is, and how many play trucks they have at home.
Someone had taught them to work silently at their table and solve problems independently.
Someone had taught them to read for goodness sake! And to count and add numbers!

And at the end of the third day of school, when my feet burn and my legs ache because I haven't sat down for 3 days. And my eyes are puffy because I have stayed up late organizing information sheets and cutting out circles for ladybugs. And my brain is foggy because I am thinking about my Chicka Chicka lesson tomorrow and feeling like I am ready to just jump out of the coconut tree...

I have to remember that someone was me.

That's why my heart is in Kindergarten!

Even if it is a little rough getting back in the swing of things!



I found some pictures of my FIRST classroom and I thought it would be fun to share a couple! Here are my "rules". I still use these! They are in a different place- but the same animals/wording.



I made those up in college and I could not wait to put them on the wall in a classroom!!! The kids love them and it gives them a visual for the rule. My behavior plan is a little funky compared to others, but it works for me.

I do not have a traffic light or whatever. One year I did a train track (staying on track). It worked ok. I just think I spent more time listening to the kids fussing about who was "on green", "on yellow", "supposed to be on red", "never on green". Last year I went to a behavior board. I have a clipboard. It has their names, two columns per day (which would equal yellow and red), and I carry it EVERYWHERE. If we are in the bathroom- I have it. Lunchroom- I have it. They are accountable everywhere we go. I have to make sure I am consistant about carrying it with me and marking it- but it has worked wonders in the behavior in my room. The children's behavior is between them and me. Not everyone else in the room. I explain it in detail to the kids at the beginning and show it to them. They know that if they have marks, they have to sit out during free time and it goes home in their folder. You can bet your britches that when we are at the bathroom and I start writing- their isn't a mouth moving. I love it! It's one of those things that sound crazy- but work. :)

I have a few things to share later this week! I wanted to upload them tonight, but left them on my USB at school! My teacher brain is back already!!!

If you commented to receive the apple poem and I missed sending it to you- please email me or leave another comment with your email so I can get it to you. I tried to send it to those that wanted it. I hope I didn't miss anyone!

Also! Fun news! My 1st DonorsChoose.org project that was funded in May shipped this week so I will be getting a technology cart and a screen for my projector soon! Hooray!!!!

My next project is up for match funding by Quill if you want to check it out.

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