“Through literacy you can begin to see the universe. Through music you can reach anybody. Between the two there is you, unstoppable.”
- Grace Slick
Music and Movement- Recognition of Shapes
Encourages students to get familiar with shapes while dancing to the music they hear.
Materials: Music, Tape, floor space
Description: I will design more than a few shapes on the floor of circle area. The students will play follow the leader while walking/dancing on the shape.
Reflection: The students were familiar with follow the leader and most of them new their shapes so it was more sort of a review for them, but still had a lot of fun getting up and moving/dancing to the music. Children always love to hear music.
Encourages the students to take charge of their art work and allows them to be creative in the ways they want to be.
Materials: The bottom of a cardboard box, Large or small marbles, Paint, Paper, Paper plate or plastic bowl
Description: I will use the top of a printer paper box and have the students place their paper in the box, pick the colors they want their pictures to be and allow them to tell me what is going on when they are doing this activity.
Reflection: I did this activity knowing that the before they worked on descriptive words. So I thought this would be a perfect activity for them to do while using words to describe what was going on in their picture. The students had so much fun with this. They used so many different words to describe their art work, it was a blast.
encourages very young children to explore texture during this sensory counting experience.
Materials: Lunch paper bag and cotton balls.
Description: Place cotton balls in a lunch size bag. Ask the child to reach into the bag and grab a handful of cotton balls. Put the cotton balls on the floor and count them out loud as the child watches, or helps.
Reflection: the students really had fun with this activity. I think it was something different for them to count cotton balls. They found it really fascinating to touch the cotton balls, so it was really fun to sit back and observe them.
ABC Tic Tac Toe
This activity allows students to play a fun game, while working with the recognition of letters.
Materials: Paper, Pens, 3 sets of ABC magnets
Descriptions: Draw a Tic Tac Toe board just as you would when playing the game with the normal rules. Have the preschoolers choose two different letters of the alphabet. Each player is assigned one of the letters.
Reflection: Every child loves the basic game of tic tac toe, so I thought it would be fun to use letter that they could relate to, to play the game. Most of the students picked the letter that their name started with, but others picked letters that their pets started with. It turned out to be a total success and still to this day they are playing this game with letters that they can relate too. It was definitely a great activity.
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom
This activity promotes the use of letters and allows the students to recognize the letters they know.
Materials: The book, worksheet of the tree, letters to put on the tree
Description: I will first read the story to the students in circle time. Then they students will work on their fine motor skills and cut out the shapes to make a tree for the story and they will then have a chance to glue letters on and around their tree.
Reflection: All of the students knew this story it was a very popular book in their classroom. But the activity that we did of building the tree and having the students put their choice of letters around or on the tree worked really well. It didn’t only with their fine motor skills but it worked with their recognition of all the letters that they weren’t familiar with. It was a fun activity, and it’s always fun to do something in class where they bring it home at the end of the day.
Letter A Apple Stamping
Encourages the students to get familiar with what an A looks like.
Materials: Apples, A Sharp Knife, Construction Paper, Paper Plates, Paint
Description: I will slice an apple in half and cut out the letter “A”. I will then allow the students to use the apple as a stamp for the letter “A”
Reflection: The students thought this was the coolest thing to do. They were so amazed that they were stamping with an apple made into the letter “A”. It was something different for them, something that they had never seen before and I think that is why they were so excited about it. I loved seeing all the students having so much fun with something so simple.
This activity encourages preschoolers listening skills and helps them to develop a love of music and rhythm.
Materials: Plastic Easter Eggs, Super Glue, Rice
Description: As a class we will glue Easter eggs together and then the students will be able to paint them with paint markers. After they are all dried we will use them to make music. To work with their listening skills I will first play a rhythm and then they will repeat it after me.
Reflection: Making the eggs was a little messy, but the students had fun making them. I think if I do this activity again I would use something besides paint pens, because they took forever to dry. But using the maracas when they were dry were a lot of fun and the students really caught on with repeating. I think this really helps in their listening skills, because in order to get the rhythm right they have to listen very carefully. It was a lot of fun to with the students.
N is for Name
Preschoolers love experimenting with different textures. I will help preschoolers learn to write the letters in their name by laminating a name strip with their name written in a simple font.
Materials: A laminating machine, laminating paper, A paper strip with each preschoolers name printed on it in clear letters, Expo markers in a variety of colors, paper towels to use as an eraser
Description: Print each preschoolers name in clear letters. Use laminating paper to cover the name strip with lamination. Then the students can use the expo markers to trace the letters in their name.Reflection: This was good for the students that didn’t know what letters were in their name, but in reality it was good for all of them. They were really excited that it was something they could write on and then erase when they were finished. When we were done, I allowed them to take them home so they could practice with their parents.
Encourages students to comprehend what the book is revealing and express how it makes them feel
Materials: Thanksgiving Book, paper and color crayons.
Descriptions: In circle time, read aloud a thanksgiving book to all the students. After the book is finished, discuss what the people in the book are thankful. Then have the students draw pictures on what they are thankful for.
Reflection: This activity was enjoyable; they really got into the book and when the students were drawing the pictures they were really putting a lot of thought into them and making them something that they were proud of.
Preschool Feelings and Emotions Music and Movement
This activity will work with students on using different emotions.
Materials: paper and writing utensils.
Description: I will discuss with the students different emotions to them and how the make our faces look different. I will then teach them the song, ”if your happy and you know it,” and really encourage the students to use emotion with the song. Next I will have them go to tables and draw me a picture of their own face with the emotion they feel.
Reflection: this activity was fun, they were really excited to learn the song, some students already knew it and that was fine, I just had them sing extra loud so the other students could hear it better. It worked out really great. And the pictures that they made of themselves turned out just wonderful. There were faces that were upset, mad, happy, and sad. I was very pleased with the creation that they made.
A well developed year long early literacy curriculum
for a 4-5 year old classroom
We will work on many different strategies/concepts through out the year and will use at least four of those strategies each month. The strategies/concepts are:
Extended language skills, and knowledge of the world around them
Understanding of the everyday functions of print
Motivation to read
Appreciation for literary forms
Learn what books are and how to use them.
Learn about the nonfiction and fiction
Understanding the value of literacy as a means of communication
Develop oral language skills
Build on the prior knowledge
Activate prior knowledge
Instill a love for reading.
These language and literacy accomplishments are best achieved through activities that are integrated across different developmental areas: cognitive development, fine and gross motor development, and social and emotional development.
Week 1: School Days
Week 2: Family
Week 3: Alphabet
Week 4: Personal Places
Week 5 & 6: Seasons
Week 7 & 8: Fall
Week 9: Community Helpers
Week 10: Colors, Shapes, and Sizes
Week 11 & 12: Thanksgiving
Week 13: Our Senses
Week 14 & 15: Winter Wonderland
Week 16: Movement and Music
Week 17: Our Bodies, Ourselves
Week 18: Numbers and Counting
Week 19 & 20: Fables and Fairy Tales
Week 21 & 22: Solar System
Week 23: Black History
Week 24: Weather
Week 25 & 26 Dinosaurs
Week 27: Beauty of Spring
Week 28: Science
Week 29: Young Child’s Arts and Crafts
Week 30: Water Fun
Week 31: Plants and Flowers
Week 32: The Great Outdoors
Week 33: Nursery Rhymes
Week 34: Mama and Me
Week 35: Later in the Spring
Week 36: Health and Safety
Week 37: Animals and the Environment
Week 38: Insects and Spiders
Week 39: Daddy and Me
Week 40: Vacation and Summer Fun
Week 41: The Beauty in summer
Week 42: Transportation in My Neighborhood
Week 43: Food
Week 44: Animals
Week 45: Shopping
Week 46: Feelings and Emotions
Week 47: What Lives Under the Water?
Week 48: Transportation for Tra
Four concepts/strategies to be used for teaching beginning readers:
1. Teacher read aloud- get students familiar with all different types of text.
2. Word study- words that have patterns, sight words, and meaningful text.
3. Word Walls- have words that we have been talking about on the walls so the students can see visually how they are spelled. This will let them see those words all the time.
4. Writing skills- Practice makes perfect, the more you get a pencil in a child’s hand the faster and better writer they will be.
Students learn best by "doing"
Students make connections with past experiences so find books that interest them
Students learn best if the material is relevant and interesting to them.
Learning is an active process. A student must give full attention to effectively engage in the material. The best way to captivate student attention is by making activities and discussion interesting, relevant, and if possible fun.
Students can learn from their own peers
How Teachers Should Teach
Teachers should make every attempt to encourage all students to make the most of their education by becoming life-long learners.
Teachers should emphasize critical thinking and problem solving skills by challenging students to question, reason, investigate their reading
Students should relish in the thrill of learning and discovery especially in reading.
Teachers should model ideal behaviors of a life-long learner without exception.
Teachers should create literacy lessons which require active participation from every student.
Teachers should encourage cooperation and collaboration, as mutually beneficial interdependence.
Teachers should challenge students to take risks, to strive for excellence, and to go the extra yard.
Teachers should be patient and willing to work with students who have trouble catching on in literacy.
Books That I read to
Preschool Aged Kids
The kids really liked this book and I had the ones that knew the nursery rhyme say them along with me.
Ten, Nine, Eight; Yellow Ball. Bang, Molly.
What kids don’t like to count to ten? We had to read this one over a second time so we could count to ten again. It was a lot of fun.
The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein
Personally this is one of my favorite books, but I think it was a little to long for most of the kids. You could tell the kids who didn’t like it and the kids that were enjoying it. Good book, but will only read it to older readers.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
This is my favorite authors, the kids really liked this book and the fun pages it has.
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
Just a simple book, but most of the time it’s the simple books that kids enjoy the most. They loved this book.
Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you see? by Bill Martin, Jr.
Another great book, it really had great repetition. A lot of the kids caught on and we were saying it all together.
The Very Busy Spider, Carle, Eric.
This really interested the kids that love the outdoors, I think it was for the simple reason that it had a spider to do with it. Great book.
Corduroy by Don Freeman
This is a story that a lot of kids don’t hear about, I loved this bear going up so it will always be a story that I share with the kid’s I’m around. And most of the kids loved it.
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
A lot of the kids had already heard this story, but when I asked if I should read it, they all wanted to hear it. Really good book for young ones that are intrigued by the snow
Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney
They were familiar with this book, all the kids sat down and listened to it very nicely
Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss
They love Dr. Seuss
The Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss
It was one of their favorites stories, even though it was kind of on the long side
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
It was a great story that you use your imagination with, the kids loved it.
Love You Forever by Robert N. Munsch
This is a book that my mother read to me, and I will read to my kids and students.
Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst
The kids thought this was a funny book, I heard lots of kids laughing.
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by John Archambault
All of the kids knew this book, but they didn’t seem to mind that I was reading it to them again.
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff
Great book, the kids loved it. One even asked if he could have a pet mouse. It was really cute
Are You My Mother? by Philip D. Eastman
They were really interested in this book. I didn’t see one kid that wasn’t paying atttention
My Very First Book of Colors. Carle, Eric
Great book for colors, I knew that the students knew their colors so I would call on students to tell me what color was what.
Curious George by Hans Augusto Rey
Everyone loves this monkey.
Great story for repetition, the kids really liked it.
I don’t know one kid that doesn’t like this big red dog, the kids wanted to draw picture of him when I completed reading the story.
Clifford, the Big Red Dog by Norman Bridwell
Coming into this class I really didn’t know what to expect since it wasn’t with Fran and for the simple fact that it was Fridays and Saturdays. But it turned out to be a really great class that I really got a lot of good information out of. The first day that I was there, I do have to say that I was a little intimidated by the others in class because most of them were a lot older than I. But this really turned out to be a positive thing. I felt like I learned so much from the people in the class than I did from the assignments that we did. When I found out that we were going to only have this class four times, I was really excited, but now looking back I really feel like I would have almost gotten more out of the class if we would have had more classes.
I really enjoyed this class and have learned so many new and creative ways to look at literature. One of the things that I will do in my future classrooms since I loved the idea of them is literature bags. They are really a neat idea and the kids love them. I actually used the idea of them and made two up for my nephew and niece for their birthday and they loved them. They still think they are the coolest thing. This is something that I will definitely have in my classroom when I am an elementary teacher.
Another thing that I feel that I am taking away from this class is how to incorporate literacy into every area of the classroom. I knew how important this is and how it helps all students, but watching everyone’s presentation, it just gave me so many great ideas on how to do this effectively.
I am very grateful that I took this class when I did, even though I was a little hesitate about it, it really turned out to be really good for me. I opened up my eyes and my mind on how others think. I just really felt like I learned to so much not only from the teacher but from the other students that were in the class, but of the experience that they brought to the class. I really wish that every class that I take at Eastern could be this beneficial. I took away many different things from this class that I will use now in my lessons and when I have my own classroom. Overall I enjoyed the class and have so much new and great information.