KinderGals: Make the First 30 Days the BEST 30 Days

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Sunday, April 2, 2017

Make the First 30 Days the BEST 30 Days

Spring is the time of year that we start to look forward to the next year. One thing I love about teaching is that every fall we get a "do over." Now is a great time to start thinking about what you want to do differently next year. Starting off a new year is full of excitement and jitters! As a teacher, you are often thinking: What can I do those first days of school that will lay the groundwork for a year full of learning, engagement, and success?
I'm excited that I am working with SDE to bring a summer seminar, "The First 30 Days of Kindergarten."In this seminar you will learn just how to make those first days your best days!
Here are some of the ideas that we will cover in this idea pack 2 day event!
All Eyes On You: Have you heard the saying, “You can’t teach a class you can’t manage?” In this session Kim will show you how to get the kids attention starting that first day! She will share how to establish routines, procedures and independence. She will also share how to develop a schedule that has a balance of independent and group work.
Get ready to learn some new chants to get their attention: You say, "1,2,3 Look at me!" They say back, "1,2 Looking at you!" OR How about a new chant to get them read for the hall, You say, "Ready set?" They say back, "You bet."
Flip This Room: Room Arrangement In this session Kim will show you how to use classroom arrangement to increase effectiveness of your teaching. Learn how to store classroom materials resources to increase teaching time. She will share how she uses different kinds of room arrangement and grouping for different kinds of instruction!
Here are a few of the simple storage ideas that we will share. To store those daily resources, try a stacking drawer storage container. Label each drawer with a day of the week. Before you leave school on Friday, be sure the drawers are stuffed for the next week with everything you will need!
Another way to use the stack drawer storage containers is to organize your projects. Put all of the projects you need to get done in a drawer. Invite parents to pick things from the drawer to assemble. When it is ready, place it in the ready drawer. As you are teaching and finish with the resources, place those items in the put away drawer to keep your room clutter free.
A rolling laundry basket makes a perfect storage unit for your big books!

Establishing Routines and Procedures in Reading and Writing:  In this session Kim will walk you through the steps to set up effective Reading and Writing Instruction. She will show you how to use the Workshop Model of teaching to maximize learning by balancing mini lessons and worktime. She will also share how to scaffold your learners by unpacking learner outcomes.
We will explore the components of the mini lessons: Connect, Teach, Active Engagement, and Link, and the purpose for each. The Connect reminds the children of what you did the last time. This gets all the kids ready for the new learning. The Teach is where the teacher tells the children the new learning and models what it looks like. Next is Active Engagement. This is where the kids practice the new learning. And finally, the link is where the teacher reminds the kids of their new learning.
Establishing Routines and Procedures in Literacy and Math Centers: In this session Kim will show you how she develops independent learners so that she is able to effectively work with small groups. One way to run effective centers is through effective grouping.
During centers our children work with their "family" group. This is a group of mixed abilities, mixed personalities, etc.--they work together well, but don't often choose to play with the members of the group. While the kids are working in centers, I pull small groups. These groups are based on formative assessments and are always changing--these are flexible groups! Once the kids are working in centers, I walk around the room and collect the children that I need. After the small group lesson, they return to their center group and continue working.
DI: Easy As Pie: In this session Kim will share how to effectively use formative assessments to drive your instruction.
One of my favorite formative assessments is "Who is in the Club?" This works well with standards that are quickly and easily assessed. As part of our morning meeting, children have the opportunity to join the club by demonstrating their mastery of the standard. I only call on a few kids each day. Kids volunteer to respond. Those that haven't volunteered by Friday, I pull during centers and assess them separately.
Making a Good First Impression: In this session Kim will share how to establish a good parent teacher relationship those first few weeks.  She will share how to set up a Meet the Teacher night that will be sure to WOW your parents!
Open House is the chance for parents to make that first impression of you as your child's teacher. Set up an Open House that will blow them away! One thing we do is to make this simple craft.  The poem is by my sweet friend Angie! The parents now have something to take home, hang on their frig, and use to display their munchkins work all year!
Developing A Love for School: In this session Kim will share some of her favorite activities from the first 30 days of school.
This fun sorting activity will help introduce the kids to the things in your room.  Cut apart a set of clip art. Invite the children to sort the pictures--things that are in their classroom and things that are not in their classroom. Use the sorting circle to create wheels for the school bus.  At a small group, invite the children to create a face using a paper plate. Add the paper plate faces to the bus and display for all to see!
Here are a few of my favorite back to school resources!


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