At the beginning of the year, we had children go around the room and find a toy from a center and bring it back to a teacher to tell what he/she would do with it in the selected center. Later, we paired the children and had them select a toy and tell each other what they would do. At first we chose children who were already friends and comfortable with each other. Later, we began to pair children who did not usually play together. Our children who speak Spanish were together at first. Later, we had them work with children who speak English. A teacher sat with them and interpreted as needed.
My Pre-K class really loved this… I’m sure you will also. Each child took off one shoe and placed it in a pile. Then as we went around the circle the children found their shoe, put it on and then told of the “work” they had done for the day. Within time each child learned how to tie their shoes :o)
Place little circles of Velcro in each of the play areas. Make hearts out of old file folders, one for each child, and laminate. Put little circles of Velcro hook on the back of the hearts and the child’s name on the front. At planning time the child puts his heart in the area he plans to work in. At review the child must remember where their heart was placed and tell what “work” they did in that area. Thus the name “FOLLOW YOUR HEART”.
For planning time my children enjoy: 1. use a hula hoop and sing ” hi ho, hi ho it’s off to work we go, hi ho, hi ho, hi ho… when the song is done, the child who is closest to the tape marked on the hula hoop is asked by the teacher “where would you like to work today” 2. Remember, “one potato, two potato, three potato four… we do this game with one fist in and who ever is out, chooses where they want to work 3. I spy is fun 4. hot potato with a bean bag 5. name tag find- all the children’s name tags are in a bucket the teacher picks out a name and asks the child to choose somewhere to work.
For planning time, I have my children roll out large foam dice. They count the number of spots on the dice and then state their plan. AS the year progresses, the children count out the correct number of manipulatives to match the number on the dice before stating their plan.