Tuesday, March 6, 2012

U is for Umbrella

Wasn't planning on blogging today because of time constraints but was made proud today by the writing of the oldest student and so "just had to" share.  ;-P
The scissors activity today was from The Letter of the Week Curriculum from www.confessionsofahomeschooler.com.  Cut and paste umbrella.  Gluing it on a larger paper allows for room for drawing.  Typically I take dictation after they are drawing but today, on a whim, I pulled out a piece of "kindergarten" paper for K. and handed her a black pencil and said, "Here you go, write me your story."  In the past, she would just look at me blankly and we didn't have much success.  Today, she looked at me blankly for only a moment until she started out, "Once upon a time."  /w/ /w/ /w/ W!  Okay...big smiles here!  I did help out by emphasizing the sounds in the word she was at but did not correct her or tell her about any typical spelling rules/conventions.  She automatically put her finger after the word when she started into the next word.  This is something we've worked on with many other activities.  Cool!  Here's a little closer up...kind of hard to see since she used pencil.
Translation:  Once upon a time, Kenzie was walking.  Then it started raining.
Isn't that exciting?!  Phonetic spelling, spaces between words, some lower case letters being written.  Definitely not as long of a story as what I'd get if she was dictating and I was writing but such a leap in the right direction!  We will definitely be spending more time on this path!

And a smile for the younger student also because he wanted the same paper and wrote IT down and told me, "See, I wrote I because I was walking to the store and it started raining."  So definitely in the right direction there for him as well!  One benefit of a mixed age group.  They learn from observing the other.

And while I'm here I'll remind you all of an activity I've posted about before here-phonological awareness.  ALWAYS a favorite. Typically we use a real umbrella with the rain drops inside and we sing "Rain Rain Go Away" and at the end the child flips the umbrella up and they all "rain" down.  Then we work with the raindrops and repeat as interest holds.
Today I had forgotten to grab an umbrella (actually not sure where one is at the moment) so we did it with a blanket parachute.  Not enough kids to use the regular parachute.   They worked together to put the numbers on the raindrops in order.  We did by 1s as an intro because they well know how to do that.  Then we also did by 10s, well K. started it out and H. got the pattern really quick!  Then I introduced counting by 5s.  I did pull our coins back out and talked about pennies, nickles, dimes and showed them briefly quarters (25, 50, 75, 100) but didn't spend too much time on that quarter.

We got quite a bit done today...a very profitable morning.  Wish I had time to share more.  Perhaps another day.  Have a good week!

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