I am a kindergarten teacher who loves my job! I teach in a Catholic School and enjoy using religion to teach values to my students. I truly believe in hands-on learning and believe that students learn and retain knowledge best when they take an active role in their education. Drawing, writing, cutting, gluing, anything that makes learning real is what I enjoy doing more than anything!
Here is what I LOVE about the Work on Writing part of the Daily 5....... that the children will have more time to work on their writing projects from Writer's Workshop. My Writer's workshop block is short. When I teach a mini lesson and ask my students to go back and work on what they just learned, they often only have 15 minutes and then they need to put their journals away so that we can get to lunch. So, the awesome thing about "Work on Writing" in the Daily 5 is that my kiddos will have more time to work in their journals. Now, it's not that writing has not been included in my literacy centers; I have always added writing to literacy centers. But for some reason, the way it is taught in the Daily 5 just seems more relaxed and focused and I think my kiddos will be more relaxed, too. I still plan to have my students work on Draw, Cut, and Write projects, though. As I think about my organization, we probably will do a few of these projects together and then I will have several laminated copies of the Draw, Cut, and Write directions available for them to use as needed as the year progresses. I plan to keep them in a 3 ring binder that will be easily accessible in the Writing center. I also plan to continue to have a Writing box available that contains fun pencils, pens, stickers, and markers that may used in their journals.
I love it when my students get to the point where they are reading their stories to each other!
As far as Word Work goes, I plan to continue this type of work as I have done in the past. The difference for me is that I will only be planning 6 Word Work centers a week instead of 12! Woo hoo! I plan to model Word Work in guided reading times and then place them into the Word Work tubs. I will continue to use magnet letters, play dough mats, letter buttons, stamps, and matching games. Last year I purchased a couple bags of plastic letter buttons from Wal-Mart that fit perfectly into a muffin tray. The letters were sorted alphabetically and it made it so easy for my kiddos to find the letters that they needed. I labeled each muffin section with a letter. The problem I had was that the muffin pan only had 24 sections and of course there are 26 letters in the alphabet! So I had to put the Y's and Z's into a smaller muffin trays!
In this picture, my kiddos are reading their sight words to each other. This definitely will continue!
The fun thing about the Daily 5 Word Work is that it provides a wonderful platform for differentiation. The other thing I am thrilled about is teaching kids to clean up after themselves and to be orderly in their learning. My students have always been great helpers when it comes to housekeeping jobs, but if I can teach them to clean up as they are working, it will free up so much time at the conclusion of our literacy block! I love this quote from the book: They now know everything they need to know about where materials are in the classroom, how we expect them to work independently and with peers, and how to organize and monitor their time. Perhaps most important, this thoughtful, sustained independent work in literacy has become a daily habit for them.
Doesn't that sound AWESOME!!
I plan to get into my classroom next week and will be posting pictures of my progress in organizing my classroom for the Daily 5.