Welcome to Kindergarten!
We are so excited to start this new adventure with your child this year. As experienced kindergarten teachers, we know all too well that entering kindergarten can be an exciting and stressful time for both parents and children alike. We know that there are often feelings of excitement, anxiousness as well as sadness on that very first day. As parents we know that there can be concerns about your child’s readiness and fear of the unknown can make this transition difficult. However, as your child’s teacher this year, we will create an exciting learning opportunity for you and your child as we embark upon this new adventure together.
Our Literacy Program is a Balanced Literacy Approach. Your child will be engaged in 2½ hours of literacy each day. So what does this look like in a kindergarten class?
Word study – students are divided into small groups according to needs and abilities. They engage in the sorting of sounds, letters and words as prescribed by the Words Their Way program.
Shared reading – the teacher reads aloud while introducing the different reading strategies (Making Connections, Visualizing, Inferring, Determining Importance,
Guided reading – the teacher will meet with small groups of children while working with texts that meet the individual needs and abilities of those students (while small groups are meeting with the teacher, other students are engaged in a variety of Literacy Stations)
Independent reading – an opportunity where students read independently, practicing skills they have been taught throughout the year
Written expression – response to stories, journal writing and narrative writing using the Trait Crate writing program
Where students learn by doing! Kindergarten math lessons are very hands on. Many of the beginning of the year activities require no paper and pencils at all. We begin the year with number sense, sorting and patterning. We then dive into measurement, money concepts and telling time to the hour. We introduce the concept of fractions, by identifying shapes that have been divided into ½ and ¼. We wrap up the year with addition and subtraction concepts. We also continue learning number identification and counting in a variety of ways throughout the year.
Science in the kindergarten classroom is a very hands on approach! Throughout the year we will learn about such topics as: Our 5 Senses, sink and float, magnets, shadows, plants, water properties, and the lifecycles of the frog and ladybug. Each science concept will be assessed at the end of each week. Your child will bring home a graded test that you will be able to keep at home.
Our Social Studies concepts are very exciting for our new learners. You will find that your child will love to come home and share with you all the new facts and findings that we are learning about each day. Some of our Social Studies concepts include learning about: famous historical figures, different holidays and customs from around the world, community helpers and map and globe skills. Each social studies concept will be assessed upon completion. These graded tests will be sent home for you to keep.
Your child will receive a report card each quarter. Your child’s teacher will also send home a supplemental sheet that explains in more detail the grades that your child has earned. We will have a parent – teacher conference upon completion of the first quarter of school. At this time your child’s teacher will discuss the PALS assessment and your child’s first quarter grades. Your child will be given the PALS assessment in the fall as well as in the spring. We will also complete the DRA reading assessment during the second and fourth quarters of kindergarten. If at any time you have questions or concerns about your child’s grades, please contact your child’s teacher to schedule a conference.