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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Learning Happens... snow, the Alphabet, and addition

First things first. I really wanted a snow day. I really wanted a snow day. I REALLY wanted a snow day. But in the words of the Rolling Stones.... "you can't always get what what you want...." But we did get some snow. And it was beautiful. So pretty. Here are a few photos. 
The view of our drive and yard from the porch this morning. 

The snow clung to the trees, it had a magical quality.

On our way to school... 
I tried to bring snow into our learning today. I tried to be flexible and put on my "go-with-the-flow" attitude. Because the students wanted a snow day as badly as I did. And today the snow was magical and I remembered that snow is always magical to children. So I did my best to use the snow as part of our day and not fight against it. We read about animals that live in the snow. Interestingly enough, it talked about predators and prey, and the reading story tied together with the Read Aloud nicely. 

I took some pictures of the class doing what they are supposed to and doing the actions to the song when we practiced our alphabet. We practiced by singing along with the Alphabet Song from funwithteaching which you can see here.  Most of my class came to Kindergarten knowing Zoo Phonics, so that is what we use. The ones who knew something else or didn't have actions to do with letter sounds learned these quickly. 
I love that you can see by the blurry arms that the students are moving along and doing the actions.
For math my mind turned to Valentine's. We previewed the Bingo game we are going to play on Thursday. The students have the do the addition to cover the space on the bingo board. The calling cards have the equation on them (3+1) and the Bingo boards just have the sums on them. We are talking a lot about different words that are used in Math when talking about addition. I might say.... "3 and 2 is the same as 5." What is another way to say the same thing? Students are starting to give me the answers I am looking for: 3 joined with 2... or 3+2=5. We made different groups and joined them. Yesterday we did this with marbles. We joined groups and write the equations. We took the end of the unit test first as a pre-test. So I am working on an assessment to do at the end of the unit. I hope it will show growth in leaps and bounds. 

How do you teach math? What is the vocabulary that you use? Is it preparing students for assessments in grades to come? 


  1. Lovely snow. Hesston got a big fat nothing. Maybe most classes are magical about now--the previous learning builds to a crescendo and these little kids turn into next years! This is a good thing!

    1. Yes, the magic is wonderful for me. I have had so many days when I feel like I'm banging my head against a brick wall and then suddenly we have those moments when I know I am doing something right! Hooray! Most of my Kansas friends have been happy they didn't get snow. I thought this snow was lovely.