I always try to be extra cautious and structured on the first day of summer school. I realize that the first impression, activity, smile, ect. make a BIG deal with little ones. I also wanted to make sure that I took what I learned from last year (since I'm teaching the same class) and improve. Here's what I changed:
- Quick 5 minute group bathroom break before recess. (last year I had them go with a buddy. Keep in mind we are located in a large high school due to space availability in the elementary schools). If they have to go, great. If not, they know when the time is available to them and they ALL learn where the bathroom is since we go at the same time, same location, everyday!
- Morning GAME during circle time. We play this game called Alphabet Mix-Up with these circle ABC mats I purchased at Lakeshore last year. They and especially I like this game because it gives them an opportunity move around while learning their letters and sounds. Win-Win! I have other games planned to mix things up later in the summer too.
- The room changed quite a bit from last year though I am in the same classroom. For one, I borrowed a couch from the staff lounge and used it as a reading nook. The kids adored it last summer. I was unable to use it this year (partly because it wasn't in its usual spot) but I borrowed some small circular tables to place books on and use around a small rug. I think it gives the room a more homey feel despite the age of the rug! I miss the couch but for now having cute tables will have to do.
A current concern? I have a a boy who is very negative and disrupts the dynamic of the class. He will call out this is boringgggg (even when certain kids are clearly enjoying themselves) or proclaim that he is better then everyone else because he is older. He is the middle of three boys and I understand his need for positive attention (which I try to give as much as possible!). Any other suggestions? A book recommendation would be great. :)