Saturday, March 27, 2010

Zipping to the Zoo

For more ideas, look for other zoo postings under my labels.

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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Open House Slide Show

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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Using Wordless Picture Books in a Kindergarten Classroom

I recently read an article about using wordless picture books to benefit children in your classroom and thought I would share what I read.

What are the benefits of wordless picture books?
1) They develop a child's oral language. Wordless picture books allow children to create stories using experiences, prior knowledge, and their understanding of the events in each illustration.
2) Since there are no words on the page to define, limit, or prescribe a story; each child can create his or her own story. This allows the child to include his or her own culture, values, and understanding within the story.
3) Connections made by the student to the story will allow for comprehension and oral language development as they communicate both the story and the meaning to others.
4) It helps children develop a knowledge of story structure. Children who tell stories using wordless picture books demonstrate an understanding that stories must have a beginning, middle, and an end.
5) It also shows a student's ability to correctly handle a book, read left to right, demonstrate their understanding of what should be included in a good story, and in what order the story should be told.
6) When reading wordless picture books, children are able to describe and develop characters for their story. Younger children may only give a character's name, while children with more literacy experience may choose to include descriptive details of different characters.
7) Wordless picture books create text. Children can bring their own experiences and culture to the story they tell. When children read and listen to wordless picture books, they are exposed to the different cultures represented in their classroom. Also, children understand the need for stories to include humor or to be entertaining. As children include humor in their stories, they learn to accept and appreciate both their feelings and those of others.

Introducing Wordless Picture Books:
1) Introduce them as books with no words.
2) Select a book to model. Begin with a picture walk. Point out details and unfamiliar objects. Ask questions about the pictures. (related to the setting, tone, differences between current pictures and previous pictures, etc.)
3) Demonstrate to children how stories are created using the illustrations on the page. Do a think aloud. Model the process from what is seen in the pictures.
4) Start with the first page and have the children tell the story one page at a time.
5) Write down children's comments about the pictures.
6) Read the story created by the children back to them. Ask the children if they want to make any changes.
7) Provide children with a wide variety of wordless picture books. Have them tell a story to a partner.

Using Wordless Picture Books in the Classroom:
1) Use them for interactive read alouds.
2) Place them in the reading center.
3) Allow students to record their stories using a tape recorder.
4) Place them in the writing center and allow students to write their stories down.
5) Place them in the listening center so that they can listen to each others stories.

A Few Suggested Wordless Picture Books:

The Red Book by B. Lehman

Votteler, Nancy; Carwile, Dixie; Berg, Helen. (2010) Using wordless picture books to benefit children in your classroom. Early Years, 1(1), 17-19.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Reader's Theater

I found this resource for doing Reader's Theater in kindergarten. Heidi offers a number of tips for doing reader's theater, a list of suggested stories to use, and a video clip of her class doing a part of Mrs. Wishy Washy. Heidisongs Resources.

Here are a few pictures of my class performing The Mitten by Jan Brett. I printed animal headbands from Jan Brett's web site. One student was the narrator and the rest of the children joined in throughout the reading. When the bear sneezed, all of the animals jumped out of the mitten.I will post the words we used when we return to school after spring break.

Jan Brett

I love Jan Brett books. I am so excited because I have tickets to see her at the end of this month at the Dallas Museum of Art, but I am even more excited to find out that Chalk Talk is mentioned on her web site under Blogs 'n Books.

I have already purchased a copy of her new book Easter Egg to use in an upcoming lesson.

Friday, March 12, 2010

The Qu Wedding

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A Quilt Story

This week we learned about the letter Qu combination. We made a "Qu" class quilt.

I have listed a few quilt stories that I like to read. The Quiltmaker's Gift is my favorite. Reading Rainbow has a good episode that uses the book The Patchwork Quilt.

TLC Lessons has a book full of quilt squares in it. Here is one example. There is a square for each month of the year.

Eating Fractions

We read the book Eating Fractions and then we used sliced cheese to learn about half and whole. We made our own class book Eating Fractions.

A Day at the Zoo

We read the book Zoo by Gail Gibbons then we made a tree map to show the people, places, and things (nouns) we would find at the zoo.

Quick as a Cricket Class Book

We read the book Quick as a Cricket by Audrey Wood and then we made our own version of the book.

Each student made the self portrait page at the end.

Here is another version of a class book I have made.

A teammate used this activity with the book.

Monday, March 8, 2010

The Cat in the Hat

We made paper Cat in the Hat hats.

We thought of what we would do if the cat came to our house.