KinderGals: July 2013

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Sunday, July 14, 2013

All About the Number

We all remember the day of letter of the week, number of the week, color of the week, etc. Research has shown us that this is not a very effective way to conquer these skills.  So when I was thinking about teaching the numerals, I turned it around to thinking about number. Each week we turn our focus to one number. We think all about the things we know about that number. When teaching kids All About the Numbers, I use this chart. This is the chart that I use for numerals 0-10. There is a different chart for numbers 11-20 and student recording pages for 1-20. At the beginning of the year, I do the anchor chart with them one day. Then, the next day I call them for small group during math time to fill out their pages. As the year goes on, the kids are able to do their pages right along with me while I am doing the anchor chart.
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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Dice Storage

Now, I’m a dice hoarder! True confession! This is my dice collection. So here’s what I could do:
Give them a dot dice and they say how many dots. This is called subitizing.
Give them a numeral dice and they say the numeral.
Give them a dot dice and a numeral dice. They say the number then count on the dots.
Give them two dice, or a double dice, and have them add the two together.
Give them two dice, or a double dice, and have them subtract the two.
Give them a dot dice and have them say how many dots, now move one more than you have dots, two more, one less, two less.
I could go on and on…..Change the dice and the assignment based on the standard.
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Monday, July 8, 2013

Reader's Workshop Framework

Have you heard of the Workshop framework? I get a lot of questions about the structure and exactly how it all works. I hope this blog post will help you to understand the structure of the workshop model.
First...What is the exact structure of this time. Each lesson is divided into three parts:
  • Part 1: Mini Lesson
  • Part 2: Application or Work time
  • Part 3: Share
The mini lesson is also divided into parts...there are 4 of them.
Here is where we remind the kids of exactly what we did yesterday.  This helps get all the kids in the same place. This has them ready for the new learning.  If you have ever heard me present you have heard me say, "The brain learns by pattern, but seeks novelty." The workshop model provides a great pattern. The lessons are predictable. One way to ensure that predictability is to do the same 4 steps each day. Another way is to provide consistent language. For this step I say, "Remember yesterday when we..." I finish the sentence by reminding them what we did the last time. 
The next part of the mini lesson is the teach. This is where the new learning occurs. First, I name the new learning.  Then I model.  Modeling can be difficult. When I first started teaching, I thought modeling meant that I told them what they should do. But, I should have paid more attention to the word MODEL.  When I model a lesson I become the reader. I have to show the children what it looks like when the reader is doing the concept I am trying to teach. For the teach portion of the lesson I say, "Today, I am going to show you..." and I name the standard. Then, I say, "Let me show you what I mean." Here is where I do the modeling.image
Active Engagement
The next part of the mini lesson is Active Engagement…Here is where the children practice what you just taught them .  Right there on the carpet in front of you, have your children complete show you they understand the new concept. This is a great time to collect data of who is getting it and who you need to pull to your table for more practice. For the active engagement portion of the lesson I say, "Let me see you try."
As you are finishing up your mini lesson (they should last only 10 minutes total), you move to the Link. Here is where you remind the kids of exactly what they just learned. For the link part of the lesson I say, "Remember boys and girls, today and everyday, good readers...."image
After the 10 minute mini lesson, it is time for the kids to get to work. During application time, the kids may or may not apply the mini lesson. Application doesn't not refer to their ability to apply the mini lesson.  Application is a time when kids apply WHAT THEY KNOW! It is a natural time of differentiation. Here are a few key points.
  • Each of the kids has a bag of good fit books. They are all reading independently. 
  • During this time they are also building stamina. That means, that at the beginning of the year, the children might be able to sustain their reading for 2-3 minutes. But, each day you add on 10-15 seconds. Then, in a month, they will have added 3-5 minutes to their stamina!
  • Once children can sustain their reading for 15 minutes, you can begin to pull kids for small group guided reading lessons.
Share Time
At the end of application, we call all the kids back to the rug. This is a share time.  You can invite children to share things they are reading about, things they noticed when they were reading, things they tried to help them, etc.

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