Please give me opinons!

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by dragonfly05, Mar 21, 2010.

  1. dragonfly05

    dragonfly05 Companion

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    Mar 21, 2010

    Hi there! Let me give you a little background first. Monday I will be starting my 3rd week with this class of 3 and 4 year olds. A week before I started, 2 teachers began and left within a 2 week period of time. So, needless to say, the class has been a bit crazy due to all the inconsistency. I am trying so hard to make it as consistent as possible--and there is another teacher in there who they know...

    Our main problem is getting them to stop talking enough to listen. This isn't everyday or all the time. There are good days and bad days. Some days when I do calendar with them, they sit quietly and participate. Others, they just want to do what they want. It's the same with lining up to get ready for outside time. I know it's also the nature of the child at this age--but this does need to change.

    This class is called the Dinos. I was thinking about getting a dinosaur puppet to be our "class mascot". I know the kids would love it! My question is, how do I introduce it to them, in order to get the most out of it? My school is all about positive reinforcement (as am I), so I was thinking to tell the kids that Dino (we'll call him that for now), only likes it when his friends are listening...or quiet... or something along those lines. Also, that he doesn't like to come out in other circumstances (loud, rowdy behavior). Do you think this is a good approach? I'm very new to this age group, so I'm unsure.

    Any advice would be fantastic! Thanks so much. :D
     
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  3. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Mar 21, 2010

    My advice is to start the class off as if it is the beginning of the year. This means go really slow and practice procedures. I don't exactly know what this means to this age.

    For my K class, in the beginning of the year we do more getting to know you things, games and activities that involve movement and play, etc. We introduce parts of the day slowly and in small bursts. Rather than getting heavily into "teaching" we are more concerned with the child knowing how to be in school. The activities are more routine and things the child knows how to do and are hands on. As the year progresses, we add more demands. Because this group has had disruptions, you may have to go back a ways. Not only should you find a hook point, as you suggested, but you may need to simplify your activities and focus on what their interests are.

    You could walk around with Dino and then tap a child on the shoulder and have Dino pretend to whisper in your ear and then tell the child, "Dino is happy to see *child's name* being such a good friend by playing quietly." You are going to have to model and reinforce a lot at this age. Mostly though you are going to have to be proactive and design the instruction that best grabs their attention and then use the moments you find throughout the day to reinforce what you want to see. You have to be very explicit. "You are being so good" is not explicit. You have to show them what listening means. Dino can do a lot of role playing but keep it short. Their attention span isn't long enough.

    As far as calendar time, inject some songs, movement, playing, etc. Keep it short. This year I even had to split calendar time into two time periods because my 5 year olds couldn't sit through it. You might consider doing small groups with part of this.

    In my class we do some movement cheers when I catch a child or the class doing what I want. I recognize a specific behavior. I call the class' attention to it. I name the students involved. The entire class though gets to join in on the movement so they think it is fun.

    Kids like doing pattern movements to get all their attention.

    Mostly though, these tykes are young. All care and consideration has to go into knowing that they are just learning how to behave in a setting such as this one. Keep it fun and short.
     
  4. childcare teach

    childcare teach Comrade

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    Mar 21, 2010

    That is what I did when I took over a class a few months ago.
     
  5. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Mar 21, 2010

    Your idea is great. I have seem a special ed teacher come into the class to work with the group use this technique. She had a puppet that would hide when ever it got too noisey. The kids loved it.
     

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