I love Christmastime...music and movies and lights and books. I've now taught kindergarten in December at 3 different schools (not to mention teaching older students). Each one had their own approach. My first kindergarten teammate had three major weeks: Trees, Reindeer and Gingerbread. These are still 3 of my favorites. We made lots of hats and ornaments and talked about Hanukkah, Kwanzaa & Christmas as well. Another school did winter holidays as part of Social Studies and the students had a wide variety of religions. This year, my new teammates have a ton of time honored crafts including light bulb name necklaces, Kwanzaa hats and actual gingerbread houses (yum). All of my kinders this year celebrate Christmas.
On all these topics, I have collected books...my class books, my retired teammates books, my personal books...3 boxes full of books. My daily dilemma ....which books to read. Some of the books are out for the students to go through, some are older and just for me to touch, some have tapes/cds and others are in between. This week, my love of reading December books met this pesky cold.
My Five for Friday is about a few of these books.
1. At bus dismissal, we read Merry Christmas Big Hungry Bear. There wasn't a lot of reading for me. : ) I had one of my students share the pictures. As she held up the book, she asked the class - how the mouse got to the top of the tree. She had used the picture to come up with a comprehension question. How excited I was for this evidence that she was comprehending the story. She continued to ask questions on each page after I read and the class raised their hands and answered the questions.
2. Dewey's Christmas at the Library was another end of the day read. Dewey is such a fun cat and I love that he was a real library cat. This is one that the kids like to read during free time. I brought it home one night so my son could read it. He loves our two cats even when they chewed the lights on our tree so he enjoyed Dewey's ball of red yarn. Merry Christmas Curious George was the favorite at listening center this week. We are loving curious animals this week.
3. A Wish to be A Christmas Tree - We watched the read aloud of this book on youtube with pauses to discuss it. The tree is sad because he never gets taken home to be a Christmas tree. The animals all tell him how they are grateful for the tree because he takes care of them. We talked about why trees are important to the animals and how their actions made the tree feel. I gave the kinders green construction paper. They cut out pine tree shapes, wrote loving thank you notes to family members, and decorated them like the animals decorated the tree in the story. Our tree theme continued with The Night Tree by Eve Bunting. This is a great tale about a family who goes in the woods looking for a tree...to decorate with food for the animals. The kinders loved it. We made predictions and drew a flow map to sequence the story.
4. Not a book ...but more trees. As our solid figure assessment, we color coded the objects as roll, stack or both. Then the kinders cut them out and used them as ornaments to decorate a "cone" hat. How cute do they look? At Math centers, the tree theme showed up with Count the Gifts.
5. In reading group, we researched Caribou...using Pebble Go and the book Deer, Moose, Elk, Caribou After we researched, we shared with the class. We read some of the book A Caribou Alphabet. The kinders picked letters for me to read. They loved learning facts. We'd researched wild turkeys in November and bats in October.
On our book list next to Mooseltoe. So I made a few things to along with it - not a whole unit but a little freebie. Click here.
Linking up with TBA's Freebie Friday