Kindergarten question

Discussion in 'Kindergarten' started by Butterfly4, May 9, 2008.

  1. Butterfly4

    Butterfly4 Comrade

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    May 9, 2008

    Hi All. I teach pre-k in FL (vpk) for 4-5yr olds. I wanted to ask Kindergarten teachers your opinion...(sorry this is long)

    I have a class of children who are academically so much ahead of where my classes have been in the past. 2/3 of my children are reading, 1/3 could count to one thousand...or more, I could write ABBCDC on the board and every student could do that repeating pattern (and lots of other combinations), 1/3 can tell time, etc, etc.

    In the past I haven't taught more than just simple patterns, never touched on time before, never even brought up numbers over 100. But after Christmas vacation I was having so many behavior problems and I realized circle time was not challenging the majority of my students, and so they were bored and causing problems.

    So, I totally changed circle time, bringing in some new things that were more challenging and the behavior issues ceased. Now, for example, when we review numbers and I have them write on the board, for the 3-4 children who are still having trouble with 11-20, I will give them one of those numbers to write, everyone else I can say "one hundred twenty four" and they can write it. I also give them harder patterns to make, words to spell or sentences to read, etc.

    My questions is, am I setting them up to be bored in kindergarten? I certainly don't want to do that! They just are so eager to learn new things, they just soak it up like a sponge. What do you do when you have some children who have never been in school before and are developmentally behind and others who are so advanced? How do you work with them so you are meeting the needs of each child?

    Thank you for your input.
     
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  3. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    May 10, 2008

    The short answer....each teacher, no matter what grade, needs to be able to meet each student where they are and help them grow from there. I know that's hard to do (trust me, I do, because I teach PreK and have a handful of kids like you are describing, and another handful that can't even count to 5 yet), but that's our job.
    Kim
     
  4. vannapk

    vannapk Groupie

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    May 10, 2008

    Butterfly- your class sounds exactly like mine! I also teach pre-k and have the same concerns you do, I am very worried about how they will do in kinder if they are so advanced. 2/3 of my class is reading at level 3 or above and the end of the year kinder reading expectation in our district is level 4, so what are they going to do all next year?

    I use the Rainbow Words program for sight words and our rainbow has 38 words on it. 2/3 of the class mastered all 38 words by the second week of April so I had to scramble and find more words and activities for them to last until the end of the year. The expectations for end of the year in kinder are that they know 20 sight words. By the end of this school year my pre-k class will know 52 sight words.

    I also have one who can't even count to 5 and has no number concepts at all, he knows a few letters and sounds but that's it.

    I think kim has it right, :up: we just have to take them as far as we can and keep challenging them.

    Keep up the good work!:2up:
     
  5. love2teachk

    love2teachk Companion

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    May 14, 2008

    I do one of two things. One, I usually do groups, not for every single thing, but lots, and try to give them harder stuff. Two, if they are REALLY far ahead in one subject, they go to first grade. However, I have had one reading on a second grade level, knew all numbers over 100, and could add and subtract. She skipped K and went to first. Every teacher will be different. Keep encouraging their learning!!!
     
  6. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    May 14, 2008

    I agree that you continue to challenge them and let them learn as much as possible. We get students that come in reading on a 16 (our first grade minimum) and students who have never learned the say their "ABCs". I would not be bothered at all if students came in knowing the sight words, numbers, etc..

    Something I would consider is to challenge them in some other ways to develop more thinking skills. Being able to draw a picture to explain how to split 4 cookies between 2 people is far more useful than being able to tell me that they answer is 2 cookies each. I would make sure to include many discovery based lessons that they aren't told what to expect, but discover it anyway (think being given objects that sink and float and allowed to explore that without being told "some items will sink and some items will float").
     
  7. ABT teacher

    ABT teacher Rookie

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    May 16, 2008

    I agree with everything that has been posted so far...keep challenging them. Keep in mind there may be some concepts the kids are behind on (social, for instance) this is when I step it up on increasing the time spent on improving these skills. I have a kinder. student who came in Sept. reading at a 2nd grade level, but socially he struggled to get along, he needed some extra help in a few math areas...etc.
     

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