Sunday, October 9, 2011

Dinosaurs Galore

Reinforcing the Safekeeper Agreement:Last week we enjoyed many explorations with dinosaurs and fossils in our preschool classroom.  The children really enjoyed the book How Do Dinosaurs Go to School?.  I found inspiration in this book that helped us reinforce the agreements we have made as a School Family to help keep everyone safe.  Since the brain likes contrast, we had the children model for pictures of both positive and negative classroom behaviors.  The resulting class book asked the question "How do Preschoolers Go to School?"  At the beginning of the book there were pictures of such things as:
-children running in the classroom
-children fighting over toys
-children screaming and acting silly at the table
-children turned around facing the wall during a group activitiy
So the book went something like this...How do Preschoolers go to School?  Do they run through the room and crash into things?  Do they turn around and look at the wall and not listen to Ms. Jenny at all?  The pattern continued untill we answered the question with a resounding NO!  Then we used the positive models to show how preschoolers really go to school.  This portion of the book showed pictures that modeled listening ears, looking eyes, walking feet, kind words and quiet voices, and helpful hands. 
When we published the book and read it to the class, they wanted to read it over and over.  Each child was allowed to take the book home for one night and then it will be added to our classroom collection.  They love seeing pictures of themselves and this is such a positive fun way to reinforce positive behavior! 

Start of Preschool

Introducing our School Family:Our School Family is called the Shining Stars.  We have a School Family song that goes like this: (sung to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star)
We are the Stars we sparkle and shine,
When we're together, we're feeling fine.
We want our brains to work to the max,
So smile, take a deep breath and relax.
Eyes and ears and hands and feet
Use kind words now take a seat.

At the beginning of the school year we read a book called: We're All the Same, We're All Different.  We took pictures of each child and talked about how we are the same and how we are different and what makes each child special.  Those photos were put in a School Family book in addition to our song and published for each child to have an opportunity to take home and share with their family.  The book was then added to our class library.

Each family completed an "all about me poster" to share at school.  It was so fun to see the children make connections with one another based on their common interests.  It really helped us get to know one another.  Each teacher participated in the activity as well.