“Higher order thinking” are that new IT words we hear in education. But what do it really mean and how does ‘higher order thinking’ look in pre-k?
Center time is about as chaotic as your day can get. It is also the most important part of your day because this is when we work with small groups, time for student play, and is the time when most of the ‘problems’ occur. I have found that an organized approach to center time helps you, and the students, stay on task, and get the most out of your structured time.
Don’t fall for it! Chances are that if you’ve heard this before, whatever they want won’t be quick. Nope, it will be painfully slow and it will be an interruption during an important time in your day.
When reflecting about the classroom layout I wanted to make sure that I kept three things in mind; 1) location, location, location, 2) access to materials, and 3) noise levels throughout the classroom. While I believe that the perfect classroom is attainable, let’s be honest “perfect’ changes year to year. So if you need to change something annually it’s ok.
The best piece of teaching advice I have ever received is, “If you don’t make a plan, they will”. I think it rings true not just to an ECE classroom, but to all grades and classrooms. If we do not make a plan for every part of the day, our students will make their own plan (and then we’ll have to deal with it).
One way I get through the long days in September is by putting the responsibility of the classroom environment back onto the students’ hands. This is our home for the year. If we keep it clean, if we’re respectful of each other and of our materials, we will have a better year. Plus, there is no better time than the beginning of the year to teach students what the classroom expectations are. In my rooms these expectations include cleaning, organization, and routines.
So you there you were, enjoying Summer break when you got that dreaded email. Subject line: Grade Change. Take a deep breath and don’t worry about it because you will rock this.
In this post I will share my list of “Need To Know Now” ideas as you get ready the school year as a new pre-k or kindergarten teacher. And I promise, I’ll help you get through the first month tear-free.