As we close out this school year, we are coming upon a new chapter in Go Math curriculum that focuses on sorting and measuring data. This is actually an easy standard to teach to my kinders since they are basically first graders now. When I think about the growth they’ve made (in EVERY way!), I’m blown away. I have to keep instruction exciting at this point in the year because I can FEEL their readiness for summer. I know I feel my own!
In case you’re wondering, Pic Kids has taken over Mrs. Carter’s class. Anytime my kids get free iPad time, they immediately ask if they can get on Pic Kids. They love the freedom they have to express themselves creatively. They also love using the voice-activated keyboard to search for pictures through Google.
I’ve made sure to integrate Pic Kids into occasional math center activities. Here’s one that we did last week when I taught how to sort and record data into a graph.
The kids were instructed to get into groups and record how they get home at the end of the day. I came up with this at the last minute, so I made this “worksheet” on Microsoft Word, exported it to .pdf, and saved it to my teacher iPad. Then I Air Dropped it to my students’ iPads and had them set it as the “background” on Pic Kids. Then, I had them take pictures of themselves (which they loved, of course!) to add to the graph. They then had to report to the class which mode of transportation had the most students in their group. I let them then expand by adding students from the other groups to see how many they could get. This was fun, loud, and a little bit chaotic. But it was the BEST kind of learning and that was evident!
I have recently discovered the beauty of a new app called Pic Kids. It’s the kid version of Pic Collage. Can I just say that it is perfect for kindergarten? Or any grade, really. I have become just as obsessed as my children!
The app is pretty basic. It allows students to create a digital collage. The best part is that they can safely search for photos directly from the internet. This is a good way to introduce searching to little ones. They are still learning how to spell correctly, so I love that they can do voice activated typing. I get tickled when I hear a child repeating over and over as clear as they can, “TROLLS MOVIE” so that they can find some pictures from Trolls. I can’t blame em.
To introduce the app, I connected my iPad to the Smart Board with our Mirroring Assist app. This is so helpful when teaching a new app! I showed them the way around the app, like how to add stickers, how to label pictures, and how to search for images. The kids love that you can design the collage the way you want!
I found a cool activity from Technically It’s Kinder that we did today! My kids created collages of long U words (what we’re learning this week!). I pulled up the instructional slide on the board and put the kids into groups. They rocked this activity. They loved researching and finding pictures of long U words. The best part is that they had to sound out the word correctly to search and find the pictures. I didn’t let them “talk to type” in the search bar! When finished, they saved them and uploaded them to Seesaw.
Monday, I also used Pic Kids for the kids to complete a Math assignment. Since we have been working on measurement, I took a screen shot of a measuring activity and air-dropped it to my kid’s iPads. Then, they found stickers in the app that were “shorter” and “taller.”
I’m loving this new app and I love that we can use it across the entire curriculum! Next up is Science. We’ve been working on zoo animals because our field trip to the zoo is next week. I plan on having the students read animal books on Epic and then create collages about the animal they choose. This will require a lot more training but I think they will love it.
Getting random love notes from kids is nice, too. 🙂
As the year draws to a close, we’re getting into some more laid back Math curriculum in K. Aka we made it through addition and subtraction! 🎉🎉🎉 We started measurement this week. I decided to branch out a little bit from our Go Math curriculum and try a hands-on activity today. It got real loud and real crazy. But isn’t that when the best learning happens?
The students partnered up and got to measure a friend using connecting cubes. I had them estimate first, then record the actual length in cubes! They were so tickled (some literally) because they got to measure their partner’s ear, arm, leg, etc.
I love teaching the students how to measure with standard and non-standard units of measure!
Next week, I plan to use rulers to record the progress of our flowers that we planted! The stems are already sprouting!! Oh, the excitement!
These last few weeks of school are going to truly fly by. Your babies are almost first graders! How crazy?! I am already sad thinking about not getting to see them everyday. Really. The end of the year is the best time because it’s warm, we get outside more, and we get to start end-of-the-year celebrations. We have a lot coming up so I will keep you updated as often as possible through Dojo!
Friday – GOOD FRIDAY. NO school
4/21 – Progress Reports go out
4/17 – Send in orange shirts by this day (Monday)
4/26 – 4/27 – DIBELS testing
4/28 – Field Trip to Montgomery Zoo!
5/5 – FIELD DAY
5/11 – Art In The Dark
5/23 – Kindergarten Graduation
5/24 – Last official day of school for students
Things to remember about the field trip:
The more volunteers, the better! Just remember that you will need to drive separately and there is a district rule that students must ride the bus to and from the zoo! Students should wear tennis shoes or other sturdy closed-toe shoes!
I may be a little bit obsessed with Donors Choose. My Facebook friends are probably so over it. I can’t help but get excited about new opportunities for my students. Their excitement is what fuels mine! A few weeks ago, I decided to do one final project for the year. This one is dedicated to flexible seating. I wanted more options for my students, especially since they are maturing so quickly in this second semester. I’ve been noticing lately how well my students and I have been clicking. At this point in the year, we just understand each other! They’re almost first graders! Here’s what the project will get us:
-a READING TEEPEE, y’all. My teacher dreams are coming true.
-4 seat discs (in purple) for kids to sit on the floor. Plan = lower one of the round tables to sitting level.
-2 yoga mats for working while laying down. The kids love doing this.
Over the weekend, our project was funded!!! Here are some pictures of the kids already enjoying our prizes!
We are enjoying Spring Break right now. I’m so glad our last day before break was St. Patrick’s Day because we got to celebrate leading up to Friday with plenty of fun Spring-related activities. One of my favorite crafts that I did with my students last year was this rainbow construction paper craft. I decided to step it up this year. I have a group of amazing readers and they love to work on fluency. After we made the crafts, I had them upload a picture of their work to Seesaw. They recorded themselves reading the poem out loud and it was so impressive!
I then used the app to create a QR code that linked to each student’s video. After printing them, I attached them to each of their crafts and displayed them in the halls. This is my first time using a QR code in the hallway but I think it’s the perfect way to pull in technology while also allowing the students to take ownership of the work others can see when they pass by! Anyone can use their device to scan and watch them read their poem.
Oh, man, I’m excited to share this activity that I did with my students last week!
As my kids have gained more responsibility with the iPads, I have started introducing them to new apps as I learn about them. Our latest favorite is ToonTastic. It’s basically a way for kids to create a cartoon story with different story elements. The app would be awesome for older students who are working on story structure, but for kindergarten, we can still make it happen!
We began by reading aloud the book Nugget and Fang. Honestly, I chose it because I just bought it from the Book Fair and I was pumped to incorporate it into the day! They LOVED it!
Next, I showed them my very professional and impressive example of a re-telling of Nugget and Fang. This may be a slight exaggeration.
We discussed expectations thoroughly and then I set them loose with a trusty partner. My kids are learning so much about teamwork thanks to the iPads. I actually am thankful we only have 6 right now. It teaches them to work together peacefully.
What fun it was. I walked around the entire time assisting as needed. At the end of the day, we watched the videos together. Altogether, it was an awesome lesson that I’m super proud of!