I have had one of Mother Goose Time’s songs stuck in my head ALL week. The first line is, “Hold hands and make a circle, Include everyone.” I love it! This week has been all about making new friends, learning new routines, and having fun learning together.
The beginning of a new preschool year is always eye opening to me. I forget how much I need to train them to become little students that love learning. The first month is all about learning to sit in your seat, listening to the teacher, learning what a “line” is, following a stricked schedule, and making sure they get plenty of time to play so they don’t rebel when I try to teach them something. Setting up a daily routine is my biggest goal. Having a predictable routine is the key to having well behaved kids. There is no surprises. And let’s be honest – the only thing they really care about the first month of school is when they get to play with all the cool toys. Having a schedule that’s the same every day gives the kids structure and order and predictability which they need.
Circle Time — We start the day with circle time. We go over the calendar, weather, jobs, and anything that we might be learning that day or month. This week, I have been working on helping the students get to know each other’s names.
Investigation Stations — After circle time, we do investigation stations. This past week has been super simple investigation stations that help us learn about ourselves and our friends.
Storytime and Art — Story time and art are next. I pick a story that goes along with the theme. I can already tell that the group of students I have this year love books. The art project also goes along with the theme for the day.
Snack — Then it is time for snack. I love the little break in the middle. It gives the kids a chance to recharge and socialize with their friends. Another reason I love snack time is because the students get to choose their snack out of the snacks that I have. I love watching them make decisions for themselves.
Literacy and Writing — When snack time is over, we do literacy and writing. We learn a new letter, its sound and words that start with that letter. Sometimes we play a game. Other times we watch starfall.com. This last week, we made a “Letter F Book”.
Free Play — Finally, it’s time to play! The students don’t mind doing all the other activities before play time because they know that as soon as we finish other things, it will be play time. Free play this first month is crucial because it’s when the students get to try out conversation and make new friends. In the first month of school, the students play mostly with themselves while they figure out how to play and interact with others their own age. We do a lot of structured play in preschool as well. I usually get one student who will ask, “When is play time over. I want to do another activity.” I think the reason for that is because the learning activities we do are fun and kids love to learn.
Math — After free play, we clean up and do a few more things before the end of the day. First, there’s math. The math activities usually only take about 10 minutes. Then, we do closing time where the students tell me one thing they did at preschool that day. And finally, we go outside and do outside play while we wait for parents to pick us up.
I use Mother Goose Time’s curriculum because I feel like the themes are exciting, engaging, and relevent to the kids. The activities for each day can easily be inserted into my daily schedule. I make it work for me and my students. It saves me a tremendous amount of time and planning. And, I feel like the kids really like the activities. I am excited to see what another week is going to bring!
** I receive curriculum from Mother Goose Time for honest and authentic stories resulting from my daily experiences using the curriculum. This is my 3rd year using Mother Goose Time, and I am pleased to promote quality educational learning experiences through play with Mother Goose Time!