In our classroom, instead of just reading stories, and orally telling stories to the students we try to put the students in a story. Each Monday after they have settled in the student read a morning message left to us by one of our classroom characters. This is either from Felicity the Fairy or our friend Lightning the puppet who Felicity has brought to life. This message sets a problem for the student that they would like help with. This week, Lightning was feeling sad because he didn't know how to write any of his letters and he really wanted to learn to write his name like the students had done last week. He asked the students if this week they would be able to teach him the first letter in the alphabet, "A a" and the sound that it makes. Felicity the Fairy said if we worked hard to teach Lightning she would bring a gift from Fairyland for us to reward us for our hard work. This week she brought us the materials we needed to make our own fairies.
Each morning when the students walked in, after they had put away their indoor shoes, backpacks and special folders, the students worked quietly on hands-on letter exercises. They built and practised their names and the letter A in a variety of ways. We also learned that if we held a small shell with our baby finger, ring finger and middle finger it can help us to grip our pencil properly. When the students had worked on this activity for a couple of minutes they settled down on the carpet to read letter books.
During outdoor inquiry this week, Felicity the Fairy encouraged us to find something we found magical in nature. The students found a variety of loose parts in nature which we sorted together on the pavement outside. The students guessed if I was sorting these objects by colour, size or shape. As many of them collected a variety of sticks which they believed to have magical powers, we used these sticks to play a game called, "This is a stick...but it is not a stick it is a...(and used our imagination to transform it into something else)." Something else we found outside were living things...cicadas in particular. The students carefully cared for the cicada by returning it to a nearby tree.
In the afternoons, after they came in from lunch the students were greeted with spa music. This helps to calm them down after a busy play session. After changing into their indoor shoes the students settled into our math routine. They have the opportunity to work on hands-on math activities before coming to the carpet for our mini lesson. This week we have been working on counting how many days we have been in school using a giant tens-frame on the carpet and singing our numbers to 20 through dance and movement. Whenever the students are done, they have a chance to rest and read number books on the carpet.