Hurray for Kindergarten! I am so grateful and happy to be able to go to work each day where I am able to make a difference. This year has come quickly and already I am amazed at all of the opportunities that have appeared for myself, my parents and my students.
We are connecting!
Modeling “how to” be a safe, kind and responsible citizen is vital. As an educator of young children these ideas are easy and fun to thread throughout our busy days together in regards to everything. I also have opportunities to model ‘how to” connect online as well. Twitter has given me and my students lots of opportunities to share things we are experiencing. We have had conversations with Kindergarten children in New York, Vermont, South Korea and Wisconsin. My students and their families with my guidance are able to experience the value of a ‘tweet” and how it can enhance and connect our learning with others. Through my modeling my students and their families experience how social media can be used in meaningful ways in regards to learning. This is important. I want my families alongside of me as I begin to share how we connect.
Skype is also being used already with parents who are calling us to say hello and ask what we are doing during the day. By using familiar faces I begin to model how this synchronous tool can be used to connect and have conversations. Through parent participation they begin to “see” how this tool can be used. Again I invite my parents of my students because I want to be explicit about how the tool might be used and the positive impact on learning.
Blogging about our busy days together has really helped my parents and my students begin to experience and reflect on our learning. I have already had a couple of comments! Our class blog provides another way for my students to have conversations with each other and their families about what they are exploring inside and outside of Kindergarten. We have a shelfari where we keep track of the books we read as well as a map of the world! The map is especially awesome because it offers my students another opportunity to get a global perspective about where we are in the world, but also that others are interested in what we are learning. Through our sharing others will get inspired and have their thinking challenged. As an educator I welcome this continually. Through this type of reflection I grow as a professional, a learner and become more transparent and open in regards to how I think about learning.
Face to face and turn and talks happen in an almost seamless fashion throughout the day. My students are beginning to understand how listen to understand and offer their perspective through discussions around books, caterpillars we find outside and through collaboration when creating structures out of a variety of materials.
We are so lucky to have a Smartboard and document camera. My students have experienced in only 6 days how these tools can enhance our learning. Through our ability to interact with these tools we are able to reflect on our thinking and share what we understand.
We are collaborating!
Through Twitter we have made a new connection with a 6th grade class in Vermont. We are learning about global citizenship and how to “Tweet” responses to specific questions we are asked.
We have learning buddies in our school! We connect weekly with them presently and share books. In the future we will be using Google Hangout as a way to share a story that we read aloud. Our learning buddies model how to be kind and caring as well as model ways for us to engage in books. we also follow them on Twitter too!
Through AirServer and iPads we are able to create and share our understanding of new concepts we explore.
We are creating!
Through Twitter we create tweets about our busy days together. It always begins with;”What do you want to share with the world today?”
We are creating different ways to write our names using a variety of materials. We are creating illustrations that tell stories so we can share our ideas.
My students are learning ‘how to” collaborate and work together to build structures and negotiate ways to be inclusive with our play. We are having conversations about what we can do as a learning community to help others. My students have amazing ideas. Stay tuned for what we decide to solve together to make a difference for others!
Kindergarten is the most wonderful place to be, really! We are learning through our exploration and discovery of things we find in nature, through our conversations with others and the many stories we read. Our classroom is a place where we make a difference everyday for each other. We are modeling together alongside others too!
I look forward to this week because we will be exploring voicethread, Kidblog and celebrating International Dot Day! All of these are ways that any educator can use with their students to bring learning to life. Only 6 days and look at what can happen! All it takes is an idea and the willingness to reach out and say hello!