Advice for my trouble spots - transitions & "filler"

Discussion in 'Kindergarten' started by lotusblossom, Sep 6, 2007.

  1. lotusblossom

    lotusblossom Companion

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    Sep 6, 2007

    After 2 weeks, my class and I are growing by leaps and bounds. We still fall apart a little, however, with transitioning and routine type stuff.

    Example: At the end of the day, when I am getting backpacks to kids and having them line up, there is nothing structured to do, and it gets loud and hectic.

    Also, our volume control in general is lacking. How do I get their attention?! It's great that they are getting to know each other, but now I can't get them to shut up!!! :eek:
     
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  3. sevenplus

    sevenplus Connoisseur

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    Sep 6, 2007

    I may not be one to give advice, because I'm struggling a bit with my group this year (although I have had some GREAT years). I have "talkers" this year, too. One that is generally effective is doing a shushing pattern. Shhhh, Shhhh, shh shh shh. (Hard to convey in type. :)) They repeat it. I do two or three and by then everyone is quiet because they want to do the shushing thing.

    I also have a train whistle (got it for a couple of bucks at a toy store). One blast on that thing shuts them all up immediately!

    Now, I have no advice for getting them to STAY quiet. :rolleyes:
     
  4. Mrs.Rhinochunks

    Mrs.Rhinochunks Companion

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    Sep 6, 2007

    I start about 20 minutes before the end of the day and I have my kids get their planners filled out and backpacks all packed up with about 10 minutes to spare and then I read to them from our read aloud book until it is time to line up and walk out the door. it seems to work for us:)
     
  5. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Sep 7, 2007

    Could you have them explore pattern blocks or other manipulatives while you are preparing everyone's backpacks?
     
  6. daysy_may

    daysy_may Groupie

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    Sep 7, 2007

    We had snacks, so I would call them by tables to get their backpacks while they had snack. Then when everyone was finished we would all go to the rug and I would read to them from our read aloud book.
     
  7. lotusblossom

    lotusblossom Companion

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    Sep 7, 2007

    Seven, I LOVE the shushing pattern! I will have to try that.

    Mrs. Rhinochunks my problem seems to be that getting backpacks packed up becomes an EVENT and once one is packed up, that one gets into mischief waiting for the others :(

    Smalltowngal that is a good idea, too - do you pack up your students' stuff for them? I'd prefer to have them do it themselves.

    Daysy_may - I thought about doing it that way, because we have snacks, center time, dismissal, which seems like a strange order to me. Are they pretty good about cleaning up after themselves after snack?
     
  8. AllysonKinder

    AllysonKinder Rookie

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    Sep 7, 2007

    When they get noisy I hold up my hand and say "Kindergarten, 1, 2, 3" (putting up my fingers as I say the numbers.) I say it QUIETLY so only the kids who arent talking can hear me. Then I say "do it with me if you are quiet" and we do it again. Some join in. By the 3rd time, every one is doing it and they are quiet.

    Now STAYING quiet, thats another story!
     
  9. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    When I taughter kinder, they were responsible for packing up their own backpacks, I would make sure that everything got in there when they were done.
     
  10. starbucks

    starbucks Comrade

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    Sep 7, 2007

    At the end of the day when we are getting ready for home we play a quiet game that I call "Don't break the cookie Jar" I draw a cookie jar on my white board easel and I draw some round cookies (about 7-8 of them)inside it. I tell them that if I hear them at all, even a whisper, I will write their name in one of the cookies and that person is out. If we fill up all the cookies with names the cookie jar breaks and no one in the class wins. Once everyone is packed up for home and is seated I give anyone who is still in the game a skittle, mini pretzel, etc.. It is usually silent in my room during this time. It is amazing how quiet they will be for 1 skittle. Now I know, not everyone believes in rewarding kids with food, but it works!
     
  11. Miss_J

    Miss_J Habitué

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    Sep 7, 2007

    At the end of the day after everyone is packed up and before the buses begin being called I read from our read aloud. After the buses start it takes about 15 minutes for them all to be called, so I put out math materials and just let them explore on the carpet. They are quiet and engaged.
     
  12. Silmarienne

    Silmarienne Cohort

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    Sep 8, 2007

    We end our day with an afternoon meeting- like morning meeting, only we recap what we did and learned that day. If there's extra time we do a song, chant (like "peanut butter peanut butter jelly jelly") We also end in prayer, being a Christian school. Then they get backpacks. They wait on the veranda for parents, if the weather is nice they can play in the yard. I am blessed to have that! I really wouldn't want to clean up a mess of manipulatives after school, by then my back hurts and I have too many other things to do! :)

    I love the "shush" chant too!!! Will have to try that one.

    MY trouble spot is tha bathrooms. I offer bathroom breaks at every transition time, which really cuts down on the "I gotta go" phenomenon (one child "has" to go, and then suddenly half the class "has" to too!), BUT I have a repeated problem with the girls getting out of hand in there- shrieking, washing hands for fifteen minutes and using half a bar of soap (yes, here in Africa we still use bars of soap!), and so on. Arguments break out because there aren't locks on the stalls and they get opened.... I can't monitor both bathrooms adequately, so how can I keep things calm in there? Any ideas?
     
  13. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    Sep 9, 2007

    I have my students play a game called 10 down. They get in a circle (at the beginning we all play at the same time but you can play in small groups too!) They count to 10 each person being one number. The person who is 10 has to sit down and is "out". The last person standing is the winner. As the year goes on I change stratagies and they can say up to 3 numbers, like 1,2 and the next person can say 3,4,5 etc. They really LOVE IT!

    And you can do hot potato too! They love that! And it is math!
     
  14. letsteach

    letsteach Comrade

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    Sep 9, 2007

    To gain attention and get them quiet, I put one hand up in the air and the other hand, I have my finger on my lip. They have to copy me so I know they are listening. If children are still talking I make sure I say "Thank you to ......... for listening". The talkers usually go quiet and copy me.

    I have a song I sing for getting them quiet which they can join in but at the end must be quiet.

    Eyes on me
    Eyes on me
    Can I see your eyes on me
    Can I look and can I see
    Whose eyes are looking at me
     
  15. lotusblossom

    lotusblossom Companion

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    Sep 9, 2007

    Cute! To the tune of This Old Man?
     
  16. letsteach

    letsteach Comrade

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    Sep 10, 2007

    lotusblossom

    Yes, I think it is to that tune.

    The children can sing along with you.

    We are now learning the 5 Ls for when we sit on the carpet at group time:

    Look
    Listen
    Lips locked
    Hands in Lap
    Legs crossed

    I have made signs for those children who do not speak English.
     

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