Recommendations for math and literacy books/resources/activities?

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by Miss J. Pre-K, Dec 24, 2008.

  1. Miss J. Pre-K

    Miss J. Pre-K Comrade

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    Dec 24, 2008

    I'm a first year pre-k teacher, and I feel like I was given very little in what I am expected to teach and how to teach it, etc. We use Creative Curriculum, which, despite the massive assessments, does little in giving me ideas on what to teach. 95% of my kids are going to kindergarten next year, and I would like them to be prepared.

    Anyway, I feel like my kids aren't grasping letters and numbers, although we go over both every day. I try to make it interactive as much as possible, as we've done counting bears, counting dinosaurs, rolling dice and counting the numbers, counting days on our calendar, alphabet bingo, alphabet fishing game (picking up letters), holding up cardboard alphabet letters and talking about whose name and what words start with that letter, they pick their namecards each day to choose where they will sit for meals, writing materials and sample alphabets are available in writing center and on the wall. Most of my kids can count to 10, with some able to count to early teens. Most kids can pick out the letter that starts their name and maybe 3-5 other letters. I just feel like most of them are behind, but then I've not been told where they're supposed to be. I am overwhelmed with the amount of children with special needs, and I have one or two who already know most/all of the letters and numbers. There's such a big difference in my "highest" kid and my "lowest".

    Anyone have ideas for good resource books or materials for teaching math and literacy? I know both are going to be a big deal in kindergarten readiness. I also will not be at this center next year, and I'm going to need a good recommendation and proof that I can teach as I start to interview again.
     
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  3. mrgrinch09

    mrgrinch09 Comrade

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    Dec 24, 2008

    I have to admit that I'm not really big on Resource Books when it comes to coming up with ideas for my curriculum, but I just love the More Than... series by Sally Moomaw and Brenda Hieronymus.

    More Than..Series on Amazon.
     
  4. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Dec 24, 2008

    The resource books don't really help me, I am not a very visual learner. I tend to learn more on my feet or in a conference than in a book.

    Have you ensured that you have all of the topics (counting, letters of name and what not) available in many learning styles and integrated into your "free time". I find that this area is a great way for my special needs children to acclamate to the information I am trying to get them to understand.

    For instance, for visual learners trying to understand the first letters of the friends name: I have a board up at the beginning of the year w/ pics of the the friends and the name written largely and clearly. We use the pocket chart and they match the name up w/the pic. In the beginning I sometimes have the student pix show a sticker (because I am not cool enough to have the child in the pix actually holding the letter of their name) and the child only has to match the two letters.

    See?
     
  5. sparklystar

    sparklystar Rookie

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    Dec 24, 2008

    well let me share something with you. Even though at that moment they seem as though they are not grasping it they are and it takes time. We as teachers have to understand to wait. You always see the end result. Promise :love:
    some books i like are below i get them from amazon or ebay fairly cheap.

    amazon:


    best of dr. jean: science and math

    a survival guide for the preschool teacher

    the giant encyclopedia of circle time and group time activities

    i love the mailbox collections also. Check these out i have many but i cant think of them good luck :thumb:
     
  6. vannapk

    vannapk Groupie

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    Dec 26, 2008

    I agree with all of the above posters. I don't put too much stock in teacher resource books, but I do love the More Than series as well. Mailbox is also o.k., I have to pick and choose carefully because some of their activities tend to fall into the "worksheet" category. Here is my page for New Teachers that may have some helpful info for you.

    You might also find some help at my math and literacy pages.

    I also HIGHLY recommend HeidiSongs Singable Songs for Letters and Sounds DVD as well as her Numbers DVD/CD. I saw Heidi present at NAEYC this year and she was fantastic. I took her info back to my district and shared it with my fellow teachers and many of them ordered her DVD's, we have seen amazing results from using them.
     
  7. teacher36

    teacher36 Comrade

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    Dec 29, 2008

    I am also a first year Pre-K teacher and we use Creative Curriculum. I have a few students who can recognize all letters of the alphabet and their sounds, some who can only recognize the letters in their own name, and some who have trouble recognizing any. Each day, during circle time, we go over the letters that we have learned so far (recognizing it, what sounds it makes, brainstorm words that begin with that sound, and I even taught them the letter in sign language). We also do letter activities throughout the day, like form the letter with play dough, write it in shaving cream, build it with letter builders, try to write it, cut out pictures that start with that letter and glue them to a large cutout of that letter, etc. I think it is all repetition and if you go over the letters that they have learned each day before introducing new ones, it will help.

    As for math, we incorporate it into every activity, even snack. We count out our snack, we try to make a number using pretzel sticks or whatever is for snack that day, we roll a dice during circle time, count the dots, put that many objects on our bulletin board (this month is buttons on our gingerbread man, last month was feathers on our turkey), then the roller decides on an excercise that we all do that many times (push-ups, jumping jacks, etc). The calendar lets us count, do patterns, one to one correspondence, etc. We almost always have a math center, writing center, library center, and literacy center open during free play each day.

    I hope this helps, I am also interested in hearing other ideas as well.
     
  8. Pre-K Teacher 1

    Pre-K Teacher 1 Comrade

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    Dec 29, 2008

    It's the repetition that matters!

    Also, remember to address all the senses when teaching. I agree with the multiple intelligences theory. Use your transition times to your advantage. You will be surprised at how much learning you can squeeze into a 2-3 minute transition. Last year, most of my students were counting to 100 by 5,10, & 2's. They all knew their sounds to letters. I try to make it as fun and interactive as possible. I can't sing but if I get a tune in my head and put it to what we are learning, I find that the kids catch on much faster.

    Repeat, repeat, repeat!
     
  9. KarenPreK

    KarenPreK Companion

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    Dec 30, 2008

    I 2nd the recommendation for the "More Than" series. Another great math book is called "Math at Their Own Pace" by Nelson. It's full of ideas you can use right away.
     
  10. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    Dec 30, 2008

    I made giant ABC and number blocks out of those square styrofoam blocks youfind int eh craft department with the artificial flowers-- I cut squares of of white paper the same size as each side of the blocks and wrote an upper case letter on each. then I glued them onto the blocks and taped the heck out it with clear packing tape so the whole thing is covered. (you end up with some blank sides which I put a ? on). For the numbers i did the same thing only I put colored circles on each side to correspond with the number on that side). We play a game and the child rolls the giant dice and what ever letter /number ends up on top they have to tell me what it is. If they roll a ? then they get to tell me any letter/number ont he block. I also use giant flash cards that I made and laminated and put on binder rings. They are left out at all times and I also use them during my cirlce time. I use them to do easy colro by number and other number recognition activities that we do as a group -- I hold up the flash card and they find the number on their paper and color that spot or whatever. The first year I used the square boxes of tissues that we had at the time! I find it much esier to come up eiwth my own ideas that incorporate the academics --- soemtimes we do cut and paste projects and i will label the pieces with numbers or letters and and use the flash cards to show them what piece to cut otu or to use next.
     
  11. Sabby12s

    Sabby12s Companion

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    Jan 4, 2009

    Have you tried the activities that Creative Curriculum gives you to improve the skill level of your students at each level they are at? I actually just printed off a couple of them for my students to help with their letter recognition.
     

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