Kindergarten Routines and Self-Regulation:  This Week in Our Room: September 9-13, 2019

Thank you to everyone for attending our Open House and coming to “Meet My Teacher.”  Mrs. Campbell and I were delighted to have met so many parents and grandparents, and for you all to get a glimpse into Kindergarten Life.

For your enjoyment, here’s one of our most popular posts, A Day in the Life of Kindergarten.  It will give you further insight into what your child will be learning and thinking about during this very special year.

We’ve come to the end of our Gradual Entry this week.  The children have learned about classroom Routines, (Self) Regulation and we’ve started some Language and Literacy activities, beginning with Alphabet work.  

Routines

One of the first routines we’ve taught is Listen with My Whole Body.  We have practised this routines several times a day as a whole class since school started, and are now using a self-regulated learning chart with picture cues for reference during meeting time and instruction.  

Eye contact with your child is extremely important.  We’re teaching the children that what they are looking at tells us what they are thinking about…if your children are making eye contact with us when we are speaking, we know they are thinking about us and what we are saying.  If your children are looking at the pictures in the book we are reading, we know they are thinking about the story. Using their eyes to observe their teachers, or checking to see what the other children are doing (peer referencing) is a necessary and vital part of learning.

Self-Regulation

From the name of our website, you’ve probably surmised that self-regulation is a large part of our teaching practise; indeed, it’s the lens by which we view all student behaviour and it is the foundation of everything we do in Kindergarten.  We introduced the “breathing ball” this week (it’s actually called Hoberman’s Sphere) and we use it as a tool to teach the children to use deep, slow breathing as a strategy to help them down-regulate from our fun and exciting recess time (yellow zone) so they are feeling calm, peaceful, focused and ready to learn (green zone).

Literacy

This week we started with reviewing the alphabet letters and introducing “a is an apple,” from Itchy’s Alphabet.  We’re teaching letter names, letter sounds and the correct formation of each letter. We add a little alphabet craft for each letter we teach; each week we will send the letters home. and these can be collected and hung up at home for your own alphabet wall.

Upcoming Events and Reminders

Kindergarten is now in session full-time.

First bell:  8:50 – children should enter their classroom/school building calmly and walking.  

10:20-10:40 – Kindergarten children eat their snack

10:40-11:05 – Kindergarten children morning recess time (on their own with playground supervisors)

12:00-12:20 – Lunch (although we allow the children to eat until 12:30 with our Grade 7 monitors)

12:30-1:00 – Kindergarten children lunch recess time (from 12:45-1 pm on their own with playground supervisors)

2:55 Dismissal

As we move forward with our full days, the children need 1-2 snacks, lunch and a water bottle everyday.  You can help your child by labelling and showing them what they should eat for morning snack and lunch; many children wanted to eat their lunch at recess time.  The children have about 15 minutes to eat their snack, and 20-25 minutes for lunch so please plan appropriately.

We are not using the hallway water fountains currently; it’s more hygenic for the Kindergarten children to use their own water bottles (not all students know how to use a water fountain correctly), and the teachers or monitors will refill their water from the water bottle filler which has filtered water.

Thursday, September 19 Terry Fox Kick-Off Assembly for students

Friday, September 20 is a Professional Day.  Students are not in session.

Thursday, September 26 Terry Fox Run (all students wear Canada’s flag colours, red and white, please).  More details to follow.

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