Full disclosure: My classroom receives free curriculum each month in exchange for blog posts that document the authentic learning experiences in my program. The experiences are 100% my own and are not swayed by the agreement I have with Mother Goose Time.
Our preschool classroom is a mixed-age group of 3 to 5 year-olds. It is very important to us to meet each child where they are developmentally and alter the lesson plans accordingly. This includes challenging those who need a bit higher level of instruction and encouraging those who aren’t quite grasping a skill. Our Mother Goose Time curriculum provides us with a Teacher’s Guide with activities already planned out for us. Suggestions to make an activity more challenging or simplified are included. There is room for a lot of flexibility, which is one of the things I really appreciate about this curriculum. It makes it very easy to individualize the curriculum to meet the needs of the children in our class.
In the beginning of the year, the children are placed in groups according to age, then moved around from there if need be. My assistant Mrs. Thon has one of group of children, generally the younger ones, and I have the older children.
Due to ratio constraints, there are times that either myself or my assistant have the entire class by ourselves. Mondays and Fridays have a much lower attendance, so it is typical for Mrs. Thon and I to work several hours alone. This requires a change in plans for skill time.
Below, I had two groups side-by-side, so I could interact with each one.
Tuesday through Thursday we have all of the children in attendance as well as both teachers so we divide into two skill time groups, quite often working on the same project, just at different levels.
Below, the younger group is using the manipulatives to count and create shapes.
The older group is also using the manipulatives that are included in our monthly kit. We began by counting the manipulatives, which in this case were feathers for Bird Day (part of the Pets weekly theme and the Me and My Family greater monthly theme). From there, we worked out story problems, such as “The parrot had 5 feathers in her nest, and 2 flew out, how many are left?”
Each month we receive an I Can Read book, which focuses on the monthly theme and sight words.
Below: The younger group were working on basic concepts of print, such as the front cover, title, back cover, etc., and drawing a picture that relates to the story on the last page.
My group learned about the basic concepts of print as well, then looked for sight words, using the sight word pointers that are included with the books each month.
Below: The younger group walks the letter T, while saying words that start with that sound. This active, whole-body activity is perfect for our younger group.
Creating the letter with our bodies is a lot of fun, too!
Our older group uses the Handwriting Without Tears curriculum. Here, we have incorporated one of the the MGT letters of the month.
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I hope I have encouraged you on your classroom journey.
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