Fifth grade to Kinder

Discussion in 'Kindergarten' started by sculteacher, Jul 18, 2008.

  1. sculteacher

    sculteacher Rookie

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    Jul 18, 2008

    Hi!
    I am going back to teaching after staying home for the last 2 years with my children. I taught 5th grade for 4 years before that, so I am a little anxious about the grade transition.
    I was shown my classroom today, although it has a few other teachers' belongings inside it. I couldn't find much of my curriculum, so planning is going to be put off as well...
    I personally don't have anything material/file related to Kinder, which is adding to the nerves... :)
    If you don't mind sharing, what types of beginning of the year activities do you do with your kiddos? Also, what are the supplies that I should gather in order to start the year off well? (My principal said that the previous teacher already ordered supplies for this coming year, though I have no idea what she ordered.
    School starts in 3 weeks and I feel so overwhelmed...
    If you have any sample parent communication notes, lessons, etc. that you could share/PM me, I would greatly appreciate it!
    Thanks so much! :love:
    ~Stefanie
     
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  3. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Jul 18, 2008

    Wow! I was just kidding around with a friend of mine who teaches 5th that we should switch jobs this year - she didn't like that idea!

    My advice would be to at least make sure you have math manipulatives - you can get things pretty cheaply from Oriental Trading or from teacher discount stores (don't pay the $20 places like Lakeshore charges, especially until you find out what was already ordered).

    For reading I would definitely recommend like magnetic letters (dollar store), letter tiles, things they can manipulate to make words. Do you know if you have a reading program? Most have basal readers the kids can use - if not I would recommend signing up to Reading A-z or Enchanted learning to have some leveled readers. As for beginning of the year activities we do a lot with name recognition - books like Chrysanthemum. Who stole the cookie where they can put their names in the pocket chart when it's their turn.

    You are going to be assessing them in the beginning, but it's more one-on-one - how many letters do they recognize, sounds.

    Little Giraffes is an excellent Kinder website - she used to have all her newsletters on there - I stole her format. I will pm you some things I use. Try not to be overwhelmed - the young kids will never be able to tell you're new at it - for some it's their first experience in school-they're as nervous as you are.
     
  4. vannapk

    vannapk Groupie

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    Jul 19, 2008

    Congratulations on your new job! Here is a link to the page on my site that is just for teachers new to the younger grades.
    There you will find a sample welcome letter (scroll down to resource section), ideas for setting up routines, rules, and procedures, meet-the-teacher/orientation meetings, prep for the first days and beyond and all the other necessities for starting the year off on the right foot :)
     
  5. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    Jul 19, 2008

    I was going to suggest browsing certain websites, like vannapk's site, which is excellent. I also like hubbardscupboard.com. It has super things that you can print out and use - little guided reading books, center materials, etc. Other sites I use and like are kellly's kindergarten and carl's corner. It could take you, literally, hours upon hours to read everything on all of those sites. If I were you, I'd browse a bit, find one you like and then take some time to really delve into that site.

    Another point - find out what curriculum you are going to be expected to use. We use Open Court, and kelly's kindergarten is written by a teacher who also uses OC, so it fits together really nicely. And there are many other online OC resources...but you'd be wasting time if you investigated a website, and spent hours printing out things and making things, only to find that they aren't compatible to your curriculum.

    Kim
     
  6. sculteacher

    sculteacher Rookie

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    Jul 19, 2008

    Thanks for your replies so far!
    We are using Houghton Mifflin for L.A., Hartcourt Math. I am not sure about S.S. or Science yet.
    As far as the age group goes, what can I expect them to already be able to do?
     
  7. Miss_J

    Miss_J Habitué

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    Jul 19, 2008

    I just wanted to say that I made the EXACT same move three years ago and I could not be happier with my little guys!
    your going to love kindergarten (i loved my 5th graders too, but I enjoy kindergarten even more!)
    The big difference is that you will have to slow down... in 5th we were told to start teaching right away (at least I was) and that is not the case in kindergarten. You need to spend a good amount of time teaching them how to act in a classroom and a school. Spend most of your time at the start teaching them to line up, move from one area to another, basic proceedures etc.
     
  8. sculteacher

    sculteacher Rookie

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    Jul 19, 2008

    Thanks Miss_J!
    In reading about all of the centers, do you have a 'dress-up' center? If so, what and how much of each item goes in there?
    TIA!
    Stef
     
  9. teach4christ

    teach4christ Rookie

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    Jul 20, 2008

    I just moved out of teaching kindergarten and into an upper grade... so I'm transitioning in the opposite direction!
    At the beginning of the year spend a lot of time practicing very simple things. One of my favorite web-sites was: http://www.handwritingworksheets.com/
    I used it to make master copies of each child's name which we used to practice handwriting skills for the first couple of months. Most of my students didn't write their names when school began (your location may be a little different), so this was great to use for morning work as they trickled in the classroom and needed something independent.
    I also taught Language Arts through the Houghton-Mifflin curriculum under the Reading First grant umbrella. The grant made things difficult in our district, but overall I was impressed with HM. It is very explicit and gives you a good progression of skills throughout the year.

    Enjoy!
     
  10. teach4christ

    teach4christ Rookie

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    Jul 20, 2008

    We also used these chants a lot to help with routines...
    I said each one line by line and the students repeated after each line...
    "Listen, listen to the sounds.
    Listen to the sounds around.
    You can hear them if you try it.
    You can hear them if you're quiet."

    "I can listen very well.
    I can listen can you tell?
    See my eyes they look at you,
    And my mouth gets quiet too."

    to go in the hall we sang this little phrase three times...
    "One, two, three all in a row,
    When its quiet then we'll go...
    SOFTER (repeat)
    WHISPER (repeat)"
    Then they should be ready (on a good day!).
     

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