Engaging Idea

A new year is an opportunity for introducing new routines or learning opportunities. If your routines are already established and your planning is complete, you may just want to add a new “twist” to the assignments, addressing different learning styles and increasing student engagement. Depending on the age group that you teach, – receive infographics […]

Top Ten for Maintaining Classroom Community

The other day one of my less participatory students described our classroom as “welcoming” in his writing journal. I was pleasantly surprised by his point of view and reflected on what might make it a positive space him and his fellow students. Here is a list of what actions, arrangements, and routines contribute to our […]

“I Know Here”

At one of our first staff meetings this year, we had a discussion about building community in our school. What is our community? How do we see ourselves? Many of the teachers had a difficult time describing our school community. We are in a building with additions that have been attached on various levels, resulting […]

Literacy and Big Ideas

We started the first of our 4 big questions for the year. How do we balance our needs with the needs of others? The question has been on the wall since the second week of school, but only now are the students starting to find ways to answer that question. One of the ways the […]

Building Community

  September has been all about building community in our 5/6 classroom. It is difficult not to move full-steam ahead into the curriculum and feel pressured by time. However, by slowing things down and making time for community circles, Tribes activities, and more discussions, the students feel valued as contributors to their classroom and also […]

Preparing for the First Day

This year I will be moving classrooms and divisions. Teaching a grade 5/6 class at the other end of school from the Kindergarten section will be a big change for me and also for my students. I am sure they will be looking for glimpses of the “Kindergarten Teacher” that they saw in the halls […]

End of Year Celebration

To celebrate the end of the year in our Full-Day Kindergarten classroom, we opened our doors for parents and guardians to share our successes. We scheduled it for a half hour in the morning at entry time. The children helped plan for the celebration by taking home invitations, creating a welcome sign for our door […]

Supporting self-regulation in Kindergarten

 In the Full-Day Kindergarten program, it is essential to give children the tools to help them self-regulate. The day is long, and often the noise and energy escalates as the day goes on. We talk about how we are feeling each morning at sharing circle. This provides us with an opportunity to listen to the […]

Reading in Kindergarten

Literacy is woven into our day. We do not have “literacy centres”, but we do have learning centres that include literacy. We have shared reading, independent reading, formal writing times that look like a Writer’s Workshop, and purposeful writing that happens around the classroom such as writing cards, letters, making books and recording observations. There […]

Kindergarten Learning Buddies

In January, my Kindergarten class began regular weekly meetings with another class in the school. I was new to the school this year, and Reading Buddies were not formally assigned as they are in some schools. The first few months of the school year had been hectic, as I was new to the staff, the […]

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