From preK (3's) to K....feeling alone and overwhelmed!

Discussion in 'Kindergarten' started by mom2kkj, Aug 3, 2010.

  1. mom2kkj

    mom2kkj Rookie

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    Aug 3, 2010

    Hi :)
    I'm new here. I have been poking around all day and loving this!
    I have been a 3 year old preschool teacher and have helped with the 4 year old program as well.
    I work in a private, Christian school.
    In the pre-K programs, we team plan. In K.....it's just me. It has been SO long since I have planned solo and having never taught K, I am totally overwhelmed and feeling really alone.
    I have the most amazing support from our director and all of the teachers at the school, as well as so many parents and people in our community. I am grateful for that but in the end, I am the teacher and it is up to me to do the planning and teach the kindergarteners what they need to know before heading off to 1st grade.
    My son went through the program but I didn't take it in as a teacher, only as a parent.
    Anyway....in a nutshell.....I don't know where to start. I know once I have direction in teaching the letter stuff, math/number sense stuff, reading stuff.....I'll feel better but I don't know what or how to begin.
    Can you hear the stress? :) LOL
    Seriously though.....
    The amazing K teacher before me was wonderful.....and I can call/email her but she has moved to FL with a job relocation for her husband and has 2 HS girls at home......so I hate asking and don't even know if she can really help me from far away...
    I will have a very small class...right now, 10. I believe all have been at the school for Pre-K for at least a year or two. It is a 3 hour day.
    I will seriously cherish and appreciate any and all response I receive and will be so grateful!
    Sorry to ramble.....as I said....I don't know where to start!
    Thanks so much!
     
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  3. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Aug 3, 2010

    Well, you're not alone here! :)

    Do you have any idea where the kids are skills-wise? You probably want to do a simple assessment the 1st week to see if they know letters/sounds, how high they can count and what numbers they can recognize to 20. Mostly the first week is reviewing procedures, letting them explore with manipulatives, read-alouds, name games.

    Teachers teach the letters differently-I'm assuming you have no sort of reading program? I use a poem each week that I put in a pocket chart. We read that chorally each day. When I introduce a letter/sound the kids find them with wiki-sticks or just the pointer. There great songs to reinforce the sounds, you can do a sound bingo, etc. Who let the Sounds Out (to who let the dogs out) or others I could pm you a file of them if you'd like. In writing they are just beginning to sound out words-it takes a lot of patiences to grow successful writers, but if you do journaling every day that helps.

    Math in the beginning is usually number recognition, one-to-one correspondence and counting. We do a lot of songs in whole group with counters-10 little ducks went out to play, etc to do 1-1 and also begin that foundation for problem solving. We do calendar every day and one of the 1st objectives we start with is patterns.

    If there's anything else specific, we can help-just ask! :thumb:
     
  4. MrsM7

    MrsM7 Rookie

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    Aug 3, 2010

    I agree with the last post that you should plan a simple assessment during the first couple of weeks (letter/sounds, number recognition, etc) Then take a look at your curriculum. In PreK, you don't have much guidance but your k curriculum should have teacher manuals to guide you. With experience, you will learn how to take their suggestions and adapt them for the students in your class. You will find it isn't that different than PreK, so have confidence! The kids don't know it's new for you and the parents will be comforted that you have PreK experience. Also, talk to your first grade teacher to see if there are any gaps in the curriculum that you need to supplement. For example, my first grade teacher likes me to add more phonetic awareness activities than the reading curriculum provides. Good luck and keep asking questions! :)
     
  5. teacherSMK

    teacherSMK Habitué

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    Aug 3, 2010

    :hugs: I teach Kinder at a small, private, Christian school as well. I have been in this position for three years, before that, I was a middle school and high school teacher! So, I know the stress of a big change. The good news is Kindergarten has a lot in common with pre-school. There is alot of introductory stuff and a lot of FUN! Do you use A Beka? If so, I know their curriculum guides can help a lot. Regardless, teacher guides for Kinder are really detailed (at least the ones I have used) and do a great job of step by step instruction guides.

    I agree with the previous posters and think you should start the year off with an assessment of where each student is, so you know what you need to focus on with each individual.

    I will keep you in my prayers. If you have any other questions, please let us know. :hugs: Good Luck!!!
     
  6. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Aug 4, 2010

    Spend some time with whatever curriculum your K uses. Take a look at your state standards, which should be available on the web. Now, integrate the two.
     
  7. dxj6482

    dxj6482 Rookie

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    Aug 4, 2010

    I am also moving to K after years of teaching PreK. I have found amazing resources from other K teachers in my school, and from this site. Take advantage of all the resources, and don't hesitate to contact the former teacher. I'm sure she wouldn't mind sharing ideas!

    KinderCowgirl- Is it possible to get ahold of the songs you offered to teach letter sounds, etc.... sounds like something I am looking for. Thanks!!!
     
  8. mom2kkj

    mom2kkj Rookie

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    Aug 4, 2010

    Thank you all so much!
    I am feeling a little better today. I know most of the beginning will focus on rules/procedures, etc.....
    I am the only K teacher and there is no set curriculum, although we use the Reading A-Z reading program and I will continue that.
    I will be using DIBELS to assess the children and will do that within the first week. I will add the number/counting to that as well.
    I'd love your letter sound songs.
    I am lucky, because I have some things from the previous K teacher to use and look at.....
    What do you do with colors and shapes? I'll be doing what the last teacher did.....and doing a color/shape/number a week and then, creating a book with the pages they will do, as well as an alphabet book with the letter pages they do. Just not sure the order to introduce the letters in yet?
    I will absolutely be here asking questions etc and cannot tell you how grateful I am to have found you!
    THanks :)
     

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