I'm entering into brave new territory...
Many of you will say, I've been doing that for years! Well, I've been thinking about it ever since I heard of it. Always wanted to, never saw the perfect fit and always made the excuse that it would take too much time. Well, my personality type likes to keep me thinking about doing something and planning it so smoothly that sometimes, I get lost in the planning phase and take way to long to reach the execution phase.
Anyone else have the same personality type?
Well, personality or not I finally reached a point where I'm going to do it! New world here I come! Why am I making the change (something I choose selectively into my life)?
- So that my kinders will remain engaged
- So that my kinders will participate at a new level
- So that my "doer" kinders and my visual kinders will be able to draw on their strengths
- So that I know I am doing my best to meet the needs of all my kinders and challenge them at the same time... all during...
Last week, I put my big toe in the pool of change just to see what the temperature was. Upon telling my kinders that they would each have a binder, well - that just made the entire thing a big hit! The water was a good temperature to wade into.
Setting the ground rules of what is expected, and what it will look like are being laid this week during discussion. "What will you be writing, while I'm writing?" "How will you sit with your binder?" So far wading is making the jump seem like not such a big deal.
I began actually putting work into this project at home and began making a set of individual calendar pages for my kinders that will match up with our calendar routine and our standards. What I am working on is the details... I want it to be routine based without being the exact same thing everyday. I want to be able to have students manipulate their tabs in their binder with ease so we don't lose precious minutes. Well, let's just see about that waist-high water when we get there.
Here's where I am in creating a binder set to match what I want to accomplish during calendar. If only I had a projector... then I'd be all set! Well, anyways, I'm going to figure out how to model the pages that aren't directly up on the calendar wall. To start, we'll each need 3 crayons (one for each color of our ABC date tag pattern) and a pencil. This monthly calendar will indeed last all month long. Students will add the date, pattern color, and then color the number as part of a countdown off to the side. Once we figure out the pattern, we'll color the type in at the top. (I made one copy without our date tag shapes since I don't know what you use)
We'll pull a number from our hundreds chart (but start with 11-19 to match our standards) and compose/decompose those numbers by first adding quick dots to create the number using ten frames with a marker and then writing about the groups of tens and ones. This may be an almost daily activity. I'd like to quickly move onto breaking numbers 20+ because I do think that it helps to illustrate place value (and solidifies what they are learning about place value of the numbers they must master which is 11-19). Right now we'll use words to decompose, and next quarter (Mid-March) move into writing equations to model the decomposition. At this point, we'll have jumped in feet first!
Oh yes, and we're also working on developing an awareness of which group of tens the number falls into on the hundreds chart, so we'll be sure to color the number on the hundreds chart, followed by coloring the entire row on the chart.
This page will last for 2-6 days. Not sure how long each portion will take, so I may do the left or right side on a given day... or if it takes longer, we'll show the 3 different ways to solve over a couple days. I want to encourage students explaining why as we work, so that will add to the time we spend. I'll pull an equation card for the subtraction side and model solving it using ten frames, a number line and the quickest pictures ever (touch dots)!
I'll select a number to solve how to make 10, so that students are first solving for the missing addend using a ten frame, which they are most familiar with. We'll move into modeling solving the equation using "jumps" on a number line, and finally into drawing the equation using touch dots located on the numerals. If we repeat numbers enough from now until the end of K... we just may build some automaticity into their "what makes 10" thought process.
I've also created a weather calendar to record on for each month and a page to record the weather on a longer-term basis. I've added in months of the year and birthdays because I wasn't sure which page featuring the months of the year would be most beneficial to me and some just love knowing/showing when their birthday is!
Brave new territory, here we come! Its not so scary bringing 24 excited kinders along for the adventure... not that I'll admit anyway.