What Centers do you use?

Discussion in 'Kindergarten' started by dxj6482, Jul 31, 2011.

  1. dxj6482

    dxj6482 Rookie

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    Jul 31, 2011

    This is my second year teaching K. I love it, and have learned so much from last year. I would like to vamp up my center time. While I am doing Guided Reading with two or three groups per day(90 minute block), what centers do you find you like that keep the other's attention? I have no aide, and I am trying to come up with centers that they can work at independently. We are not allowed to have a kitchen, blocks, art-except if it goes with a story, etc... In the centers that work for you, what activities do you have in them, and how often do you rotate centers? Thanks for all your help! :)
     
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  3. myKroom

    myKroom Habitué

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    Jul 31, 2011

    I use Daily 5! Look into it, it's awesome! Had to be simplified for K but it's very easy!
     
  4. janney

    janney Cohort

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    Jul 31, 2011

    I am going to start daily 5 for centers this year as well. In the past I had a lot of different stations that I rotated every 10-15 minutes. This past year I found that the stations that the students didn't want to leave or would go to when it wasn't their turn (besides computers :) ) were the writing and library station so I think daily 5 will be a good fit and I plan on doing each station this year for 20 minutes.
     
  5. janney

    janney Cohort

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    Jul 31, 2011

    I have also found that if you add a composition book and a pencil to word work stations it helps to extend the station. If they are done/tired of the station they can write about what they did.
     
  6. MrsM7

    MrsM7 Rookie

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    Jul 31, 2011

    myKroom- would love to know more about how you use Daily 5. I used it and loved it for older kids (second grade) but am looking for pointers in how to use it in K. This year, I followed the routine of the other K teachers of 4 different centers with lit activities that they rotated to every 15 minutes, but found the kids off task alot and spent my time managing behavior rather than teaching reading! I also have big classes (25 kids) and I certainly think that's part of the problem too...
     
  7. janney

    janney Cohort

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    Jul 31, 2011

    MrsM7 how many students did you have to a group. Kinders usually do better by themselves or with one partner.
     
  8. dxj6482

    dxj6482 Rookie

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    Aug 1, 2011

    Thanks! I'll look into Daily 5. :)
     
  9. MrsM7

    MrsM7 Rookie

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    We have 4-5 kids in a group/6 groups. We rotate 3 times and I have a para who also is teaching guided at the same time who works with 3 groups during that time. So they have 1 guided group and 2 independent centers daily. I like having smaller groups for independent work too and also like the kids to get guided reading every day. I thought about using Daily 5 and pulling 3 groups of 4-5 to work with me or para at the same time as D5 so we can still meet with everyone daily. I need to do them at the same time since I teach 1/2 day and time is limited.
     
  10. mom2ohc

    mom2ohc Habitué

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    Aug 2, 2011

    i use Debbie Diller's Workstations book with a few of my own additions

    SO...

    read the room
    write the room
    computers
    listening station
    chalkboards
    whiteboards
    pocket charts
    big books
    magnets
    letter tiles
    sight words
    word sorts
    playdough
    word puzzles
    wikki sticks
    magna doodles
    book buddies
    writing center
    letter writing
    coloring/drawing
     
  11. myKroom

    myKroom Habitué

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    Aug 3, 2011

    Here is how I do it:

    My maximum per center is 4...you may have to change that with such a big class. I only have 18 kids, so 4 leaves me with some spare spots open so everyone gets a choice.

    Listen to Reading-I have books on tape that they listen to. Right now I only have one tape player, but I'm hoping to get some individual ones for them to use. I have also found some online books for them to use, but the site doesn't always work.

    Read to Self-At the beginning of the year I have a variety of books out and no book boxes yet. This is when I teach them how to use the books, put them away, ways to read, etc. After about the first quarter then I get the book boxes out and let them use those. In my book boxes I have books from our reading series, for fun books, a set of alphabet letters so they can spell some words if they don't want to read, and we do PWIM so I also put PWIM words in there.

    Work on Writing-I have a station with colored pencils and crayons for them to work at. At the beginning of the year we work on getting details in the pictures and dictating sentences. Then later I make them write the sentences by themselves. By the end of the year they are drawing and writing at least 2 sentences up to 4 sentences independently. I make them work on a page until it is finished...some take a day, some take a week. It's their pace!

    Word Work-My word work is based off of my PWIM poster. The kids sort our PWIM words, spell them with magnets, write them on white boards, use stampers, etc. Basically fun, hands-on things to help them write and learn these words. I also have them use our high frequency words here too to change it up.

    I don't have Read to Someone...this is hard in K. I will sometimes add this at the end of the year if the kids can handle it. I also will have them do this during reading time...but during centers I find them goofing off more then reading to someone!!

    I often supplement and add a few centers like computers (if available). I usually have a puzzle center, especially at the beginning of the year. I have a file folder game center with letter and word games.

    I honestly don't start my reading groups until the second semester usually. I meet with small groups before hand, but I do more games and letter activities then actual reading groups.
     
  12. MrsM7

    MrsM7 Rookie

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    Aug 3, 2011

    Thanks for the info!!

    Do you start right away?? I usually start pulling groups in late October (letter/word activities rather than reading too) and thought I would use Sept and Oct just to train them on D5.
     
  13. myKroom

    myKroom Habitué

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    Yes, I start a soon as possible! But it's all training time!!! :D Doing the work up front is 100% worth it when I do finally get to groups!

    Good luck!! Let me know if you have more questions!
     
  14. MrsM7

    MrsM7 Rookie

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    Aug 4, 2011

    I do have more questions :)
    1. How many rotations do you do each day? (I teach 1/2 day)
    2. Do you let them choose or assign?

    Thanks again!!
     
  15. myKroom

    myKroom Habitué

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    Aug 4, 2011

    Happy to help!! :D Feel free to ask anything you want!

    I do centers for 45-60 minutes. I usually do 3-4 rotations for about 10 minutes each. The spare time is used between centers when we do a quick, whole group phonemic awareness activity and regroup before heading to a new center. They choose their own spots, but they know they cannot repeat the same center in the same day. When I taught first grade I made the kids keep track and go to every center before repeating...but haven't found a good way to do it in K. Actually, I think the K kids are pretty good about trying them all! There are obvious favorites...but they try everything usually!
     
  16. MontanaBean

    MontanaBean Rookie

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    Aug 5, 2011

    MyKroom (and everyone),
    I am so excited to see your posts about the Daily 5 (I just read it this summer). I just found out yesterday I am being switched from 4th to kindergarten, and I am happy but in a state of YIKES. I have a lot to learn in a little bit of time. I am wondering if you would mind describing your day. My biggest concern is learning how to be realistic with expectations. I was so glad I read that you don't start groups until 2nd semester! I previously taught 1st/2nd, but I am well aware this is a whole different ballgame : ) Thanks for any reality checks!:dizzy:
     

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