A couple weeks ago I started sharing the activities I do in class. Here comes the next one. The game is called "Flying Cards". You can play the game with any topic you want and also can ask your kids to tell the vocabulary or make sentences out of them. So, how do we play the game? You take a set of flash cards and choose a kid. The kid takes the cards and throw them into the air so the cards spread around the classroom, some facing up and some down. According to the level of your classroom and your aim, ask the kid to tell the word or make sentences out of the ones that are facing up . The game is fun and kids like throwing the cards. But some tips will be useful here, I guess. When the kid with the flash cards throws them, there may be some curious ones who want to touch the cards or/and turn the ones that are facing down. So, be sure that you set the rules and explained them to the class very well before you start the game. Another point to consider is, if you play with a lot of flash cards, while a kid is producing sentences or saying the words, some of the others may get bored and spoil the game. So, it is better you play with 8-10 cards. The game is so fun and also productive in many ways. Hope you will enjoy:)
Teaching everyday language and daily routines are a part of our kindergarten curriculum in my school and I used to teach things we do in a day by using flashcards and TPR. Then, we started to use "Potato Pals" and everything is easier now. There are two sets of the books and each set contains six stories. The characters are very cute potatoes and are all colorful. There is a cue system which helps to repeat the language and my kids feel very comfortable with it because they cannot read but can read the pictures! At the first two or three lessons, we listen to the stories from the CD. The kids pay a lot of attention because there are some sound effects used before you hear the sentences and kids love these effects! The following lessons, we read the story, sing the songs and dance.(I have my own choreography for each song:)Then we play games out of the sentences/patterns we have learnt. My kids really enjoy "Potato Pals" and learn a lot from these cute friends!
Children have much more energy than any grown-ups have. When you have something more than usual what do you do? You use or spend it, right? So, children need to spend all this extra energy. But how and when? If you plan your lessons well you have the advantage, if not then be ready for interruptions, spoilers and nonefficient classes. Here, I will be telling you about some energy reducing games and activities.
A fun and very active game you can play during your class is "Flyswatter". You can take any topic you want for this game. You have to get your flash cards and a couple of flyswatters. Lay down the flash cards on the floor as a circle. Choose a group of kids according to the number of your class. While the kids are in the center of the flash cards, holding the flyswatters, you call out a flash card or a sentence that addresses a flash card. (Calling out a word or a sentence depends on the level and what you taught before.) Then kids run and hit the right flash card with the flyswatters they hold. You can make groups and give them points or just tell the first hitter "Well-done!" .
When I was a little girl, I remember watching "Karagoz and Hacivat" http://www.karagoz.net/english/shadowplay.htm a traditional Turkish puppets shadow play. About a month ago I heard about Medea Awards http://www.medea-awards.com/ and went back to my childhood... I made a small research on how it is performed and decided on making the project "Fellow Shadow Spider Incy Wincy Theatre" for medea-awards. First, I chose the nursery rhyme "Incy Wincy" among hundreds on my mind and then I determined the elements in the play; a spider (for sure!), a house with a water spout, a smiling sun and rain clouds. Then I found some pictures from the internet that will fit to the elements in the play and I drew them (considering the copy rights I didn't copy them directly, but drew by looking at the pictures- inspiration:)) and then copied them to transparent paper. After copying, my students helped me coloring and cutting them. As a screen I used tracing paper. I set a spotlight behind the tracing paper and recorded the play. To move the puppets easily, I used wooden sticks. Again considering the copyrights, two colleagues (Ezgi Ozbey & Burak Usanmaz) played the music and I sang the song. It was more than fun! We laughed so much during the recording of the rhyme. As a final touch, I put the music and the video together on blogspot and there it was! http://fellowshadow.blogspot.com/
As a kindergarten teacher I know (very well!)the importance of attention span and varying your activities. (It is variable and range from only 3 to 5 minutes per year of age in young children.)In a fourty-minute lesson you should at least have five or six different activities to keep your kids attached. Considering this, I always include as many games, songs, rhymes and stories related to the topic as I can. But the thing I never change is the daily routines in my lessons. Once I go into the classroom, I greet my kids with a song and then we sing and dance about what the weather is like, what the month, day, season it is. And we do all these routines in the same order. Surprisingly they never get bored and moreover they enjoy every second of it. Above you see a picture of my 5-year-olds laying down after doing the days of the week routine and singing Jack Johnson's (You do remember "Curious George, don't you?)" Lullaby" and resting... http://www.jackjohnsonmusic.com/
As the new year started we have made new bullettin boards according to our theme" Back to School". With my 6 year old kids we made a baloon craft and a duck craft with my 5 year olds. The craft was free coloring but while the students were coloring I asked them some questions (one by one) like: "What colors do you use?" "What's your favorite color?". They had fun during the craft and I had the opportunity to observe who has learnt the colors and which colors need to be revised. ..