ABC's of Kindergarten
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ABC's of Kindergarten


Please do not link directly to this image's

Of Kindergarten

Please do not link directly to this imageA - AR stands for Accelerated Reading Program. This computer based program allows students to read books and take tests on a computer to measure their level of comprehension.

B - Book Clubs - I will be sending home Scholastic Book Club forms each month for you to purchase books for your child at a reduced rate.

C - Conferences (Parent/Teacher) I will be scheduling parent conferences so we will be able to discuss any concerns you or I may have concerning your child. The first conference time is usually in the fall with other conferences being scheduled as needed throughout the year.

D - DIBELS - The State of Alabama has adopted the DIBELS testing program for grades kindergarten through third grade. DIBELS stands for "Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills. This test is administered to the students on a one-to-one basis. There are 3 test dates each year, Fall, Winter, and Spring. For kindergarten students, the tests measure their Phonological Awareness that is the first steps in reading. Initial Sound Fluency, Letter Naming Fluency, Phonemic Segmentation Fluency, and Nonsense Word Fluency are the areas tested in the kindergarten level. By first grade, Oral Reading Fluency will be added and continued through third grade. There are new tests for fourth through sixth grades being developed now.

E - Emergencies - You will be contacted if your child is injured on the playground or during P.E. We also have a school plan in case of fires, tornados, or intruders.

F - Field Trips - We take a field trip First Semester and one during the Second Semester. The second trip is usually to the Birmingham Zoo. Parents are invited to go as chaperones but they may need to carpool for the trip. There is usually very limited seating on the buses with the students.

G - Guided Reading - Guided Reading is a form of small group instruction that uses leveled books that help build the reading level and self esteem of each child.

H - Handbook & Handwriting - Please read it carefully for more details about our Kindergarten program. Scottsboro City Schools teach the Zaner Bloser handwriting method. We will begin handwriting right away and continue throughout the year.

J - Journals - We try to write in our journals daily. I begin the year by showing the children examples of journal writing in the beginning stages of the writing styles. The first stage is kid writing, in other words scribbling or just drawing pictures. The second stage is phonetically spelling the sounds they hear in the words and the third stage is independent writing. Once they reach the in-between point of the 2nd and 3rd stages, they know they no longer need my words on their page. These methods give them the confidence to attempt most all words they are trying to write. I still help them spell words or rather help them “hear the sounds” so they can spell on their own.

K - You can "keep up" with all class info by using their folder. The children will bring their folders to and from school everyday. In it, all communication will be kept; notes home and items to be sent to school. If you will check the folder nightly for notes and their behavior reports and initial each day, it will help to know who is and isn’t checking the folders daily. Hopefully, this folder will serve two purposes: foster better communication between home and school, and help your child to begin strong organizational skills. Please help your child to remember to bring this to school daily.

L - Lunch Accounts – Each student in our school system has a computer ID number to use for their lunch account. Please send all lunch money to school in an envelope labeled with your child’s name, my name, Lunch Money, how much money you have included, which account it goes into (lunch, breakfast, extra drink) and their ID number. If you have any questions about your child’s lunch account, please call the school and speak to Mrs. Tate, our lunchroom manager.

M - Math & Music - We will use the Saxon Math Program this year. We have daily Class Meetings where we do calendar activities, music and our math lesson. You will not see many Math worksheets coming home. Our program mainly teachs skills and concepts through manipulatives ... teddy bear counters, unifix cubes, pattern blocks, tangrams, pretend money, clocks, etc.

Listen for several new songs that your child will be learning. We have lots of fun singing and moving to our silly songs. We will also have music class during the second semester of school this year.

N - Newsletter - To know all the events and news from my class, I will send home a newsletter on a monthly basis. (I may send more during a month if the need arises.) The school newspaper, Caldwell Compass, is published periodically during the school year. This will also be sent home with the students to help you keep up with the “school news”.

O - Open House – Families are invited to attend our Open House in the fall. This is a time for you to view the classroom with your child. Your child will want to take you on a tour of the school to see the other areas of the school they visit during the week.

P - Phonics - Your child will begin blending sounds shortly after we begin school. We also work in phonics centers several days a week. Poetry is another large part of my language arts program. We work with several different poems throughout the week. The children will find the letters being studied, sight words (star words) being recognized, rhyming words, etc. in the poetry. We will be working on the following phonological awareness strategies...

Letter Naming Fluency - students name letters at a speedy pace
Onset Recognition - students can say the beginning sound of a word
Phonemic Segmentation Fluency - students can break apart the sounds of a word
Nonsense Word Fluency - students can blend sounds to make words

Q - Quick Good byes leave drier eyes!

R - Rules & Research - Please read the handbook to find out about our discipline plan. Did you know? The probability of a child remaining a poor reader in 4th grade given the child is a poor reader in 1st grade is 88%. The probability of a child remaining a good reader in 4th grade if a child is a good reader in 1st grade is 87%. (Juel, 1988). Kindergarten and 1st grades are CRUCIAL grades in determining reading success. Please do not take kindergarten lightly. It is VERY important.

S - Sight Words, Show 'n Tell, Spanish, Sign Language - We will focus on sight words throughout the year. Sight words are important for your child to recognize quickly. This will help with his/her fluency when they begin to read. We will refer to our sight words as "Star Words" since they will feel like "stars" because they will be able to read quicker.
I do Show 'n Tell a little differently. Your child may bring something from home to "show" the class as long as it has an educational value to it. Postcards and pictures (etc.) from trips or other special times. If you are unsure about something being appropriate to send, just ask, The reason for this particular selection of "show-and-tell" items is to keep the "toys" home. I do not need to keep up with toys.
We will be learning some Spanish. We have a wonderful Spanish instructor that comes to class once a week. She is sponsored by the Three Arts Council to enrich the lives of our students. I do teach the students a little sign language as well during the year. This is sometimes used in songs, directions, etc. It just adds a little twist to the same old boring vocal directions.

T - Testing, Toys & Tattling - The research that was mentioned for the letter "R" has brought about a new standardized test from the State of Alabama. The DIBELS (letter "D") testing dates are Fall, Winter, Spring. The data collected from the tests is used to identify strengths and weaknesses in each child. This lets me know what areas the children need to improve in to ensure reading success in later years.
Please do not let your child bring any toys to school. Our class policy on tattling is as follows: You can tell a teacher if someone is hurting you or school property, such as writing on the floor, table, walls, etc. In our room this is not tattling. To go a little further on this issue, we do not encourage the children to hit back if someone is hitting them or pushing them. Please talk with your child about this so he/she will not take matters into their own hands.

W - Word Walls We use several word walls throughout the year.
Name word wall - the students will learn to read their classmates names
Environmental Print - the students will realize they can read the words on food packages and restaurant names, etc.
Star Words - the students will learn to read sight words that aid in their reading skills

Y - Yearlong calendar - This is located in your handbook.

Z - Zero Tolerance & ZZZ's - The Scottsboro City Board has put into place a Zero Tolerance Policy. No children are allowed to talk of violent acts including the use of guns, knives, etc. to hurt someone at any time. Please know that your child will be protected from this type of conduct to the best of my ability.
Our rest time will be about 45 - 60 minutes long. During this time the children will lay down on their mats. They must lie down and remain quiet so those that wish to sleep will not be disturbed. They do not have to go to sleep, but they must remain quiet. I will use this time to work with individual students as necessary.

Special Thanks to Jamie Solley for her idea!