It’s back to school time and you are ready to make a difference! Where do you start? You know the first book you will read will be The Kissing Hand, or Rainbow Fish. Your first few lessons will be “all about me,” “school” and/or “friendship.” And as much as we would like kindergarten to stay play based-we all know that our administrators are lurking-looking for evidence of the common core dripping from our activities. How can we make administrators happy, yet stay true to our beliefs and keep kindergarten developmentally appropriate?
To all of the newbies and teachers that have switched grades this can be extremely overwhelming. My advice to you would be to put on the brakes and take a deep breath-it will all be okay. There is a way to meet students’ overall needs and common core requirements at the same time!
So where should you start? The ABC’s of course!
In this post you will see all of the fun ways that I incorporated ABC’s into my classroom as a whole in order to meet the level A reader by November goal. Many of the activities that I used could be used in large group, small group, with volunteers or interventionist (aka-teacher assistants). Today’s segment focuses on the way we can use a student’s name to teach the ABC’s.
I always start with the name. Lets face it-kinders are egocentric and love their name. Check out all of the fun name activities below. I loved using these activities to introduce the flow of literacy centers. They are hands-on, developmentally appropriate, yet can easily be tied to the common core. All of the printables for the activities below are a part of a free packet. Click here to download.
- cardstock paper with each child’s name
- white glue
This is one of my favorite first week of school activities. Students use their name tags as a model and place the beads on the bracelets. I love listening to them talk about the letters in their name as they compare bracelets. This is also a great math activity. Click here to purchase the bracelets and here to check out the beads.
Another option is a name necklace. I use the letter beads for tons of centers throughout the year-definitely a great purchase. Students create their necklace using a beads and a piece of year-or lacing yarn. When there necklace is complete I like to group students in multiple ways. For instance-all of the children that have a name that starts with a K stand here…if you have five letters in your name stand here…or find someone in the room that has similar letters. Think of all the letter connections they are making-exciting! To check out tipped laces click here. To check out the ABC beads click here.
Kids love using wikki stix! Below are two activities that my students love. Using the class name ring, big letter beads and/or wikki stix, students will practice building their classroom friends names. Using playdough would also be a fun way to form the letters.
Everyone has magnetic letters in their room. To change up the wikki names, have students use magnetic boards or cookie sheets to build their names.
We all know that children love stickers. They will love to place stickers around their. There are also printables available to “button It” and “stamp it.”
After completing the activities and centers above, most students will gain, on average ten letters. For those that do not, send some of these activities home for extra practice! These activities are sure to be a hit! If you would like to download the printables click here.
Thank you to Teaching in the Tongass for the adorable clip art!
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Great ideas! Thank you!
LOVE! It as much as I love Play-Based Learning. My fear is that parents think we aren't doing much when they don't get this pile of paper brought home — then there is that whole administration thing. 🙂 Never quit playing!
Wow-Isn’t that the truth! Thanks so much for the comment!
What precious ideas! Thank you.
Thanks for sharing these clever ideas, Kate!
Linda at Primary Inspiration
So many great ideas for practicing their names! The sticker one is my favorite!
Great ideas! Thanks for sharing!!!
Over the 1st Grade Rainbow
Kate…best post ever! I love all of the ways you used your freebie, and I shared both links with the K teachers in my building. Perfect!
Awesome ideas! Thanks for sharing them!