Wednesday, August 20, 2008

First Day of Preschool

I can't even begin to tell you what a wonderful year I think this will be. So many of my students are returning from last year. Today when I opened the door , it was as though we had not been gone for three months. I saw little ones that were " clingers" last year walk in and go straight upstairs to the bathroom to wash their little hands- eager to play. As a teacher, I can't tell you how GOOD that makes me feel. They feel like this is their home. The love us. They feel comfortable here. Wow... what a great feeling it is.

Today we spent a lot of time just getting to know each other and exploring all the materials that we have available. It was funny to hear the veterans saying -" Yes, you can use scissors, Ms Debbie leaves them out all the time." or " did you hear the bell, that means we clean up and we can go sing." My little guys from last year are my leaders this year. I smile as I say that realizing that is the goal of preschool - to create independent, confident short people ready to conquer the world and be successful in school. What creates confidence in children? Glad you asked. Acceptance! Show them you love them , that they are not just fixtures in your room. Be interested in what they say and do. Build Success- Dont set a child up for failure! Give them tasks that are age appropriate and allow them to be successful. Example: I dont expect a 3 year old to sit and watch me throw flashcards at lightening speed to name things like A is for Apple. Why do that when that 3 year old would rather cut the apple and eat it, or paint with it or toss it? As she is doing something more appropriate , I can talk to her in conversation that the word Apple starts with A.. maybe. Set Routines. Children love knowing what to expect. Have you ever said " I can do anything as long as I know what to expect."? Kids are the same way. They thrive on routine. Today was a classic example of that as my returning children dropped right back into our old schedule like it was yesterday. Routines make children feel safe.

Ok, I will jump off my soap box for now and share with you how we learned today.

We played in the moon sand.

We talked to Randy on our phones.

We played Dress up.

We danced and sang to Debbie and Randy's CD. You would think they would get tired of it.
We created in the art center. Gavin is working on a large piece of styrofoam.

Our back to school theme is " Dive into preschool". These is a large basket of shells. The children used a magnifying glass to explore them. As children wandered to the basket we talking about large and small, smooth and course. We sorted. One little boy said he found one shaped like a tornado. We counted.

We sorted Nemo fruit snacks.

Here's one little boy showing me his "tornado" shell.

Same little boy bowling on the porch.

I can only hope tomorrow will be as good as today. Of course, most of our days turn out to be exactly what we expect them to be!


Miller said...

Hi, came across your blog while browsing. I'm a Principal of a Prep School in South Africa. I know what you are talking about. First days are really special. Your job at the beginning of every year is a mamoth one. All the best for the year ahead and hope you survive the little mites!

Juliann said...

Sounds like a great first day. I do love it when kids feel ownership of the room and the day. Good stuff.