The second week of school seems always to be the longest, so you probably noticed some tired, and possibly emotional little ones coming home. Friday is a long day with no specials, but we broke up the day with Brain Breaks and play, in addition to recess. We started our day by having kids try and name all their classmates. Two children were able to do that today and received a certificate to note their accomplishment! I will continue to give kids the chance to try to earn their certificate next week!
We had a Lock Down and Shelter in Place drill today. We sat in a corner of the room with the lights out and door locked. Our blinds were closed, so the room was somewhat dark. The children for the most sat quietly as directed, but a couple children were laughing and crawling around under chairs. After the drill, we talked about the importance of being serious and quiet on any drill we have so they can hear and understand instructions. I don't share any circumstances when we would need to have these two drills, but I did tell them it is important for them to remain silent and still. I shared a few ideas for how to sit quietly and wait. We talked about thinking about a place we like to visit that makes us happy. I gave them a couple examples and did a think aloud where I told them what I was thinking and visualizing, or making a little movie in my head. We did have a couple very nervous friends, so the second idea I shared was just holding hands with the child next to them. In the next couple weeks we will have a weather drill and an earthquake drill. We talked about these drills, and I stressed that this is something that we have to practice to be sure we know how to be safe, but it is not a situation we think would likely happen. You may want to just mention the drills and ask them how it went to find out if they have an worries. We talked about talking about any problem or worry they have with a grown-up so they can share the worry and the child won't have to worry anymore.
We started our weather unit today by playing Stand and Deliver. This is an exercise where students think about words associated with weather. Everyone stands in a circle or rectangle and says one word related to weather. They can't tell a story or say more than one word, which for kindergarteners is a challenge in itself! Then we go around the circle with students saying a word, being sure not to repeat what someone else has said. If they run out of words, they sit down and cannot get up again. They did a great job, especially for the first time! Then we read Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, by Judi Barrett, and put a thumb up each time we heard a weather word. Ask me to tell you five weather words!
I'm getting our reading testing done as fast as I can so we can get into the routine of reading groups. We have at least a couple more days, but hopefully sometime next week I will have them in groups so we can begin our reading groups.
Have a great weekend!