Today I made a few changes in the Makerspace. It was the New Entrant teams turn again and I decided that rather than learners choose one challenge station they would get to rotate around 6 different stations (10 minutes at each). The reality was they managed 5 rotations and it appeared to suit these learners much more. It definitely was a lot more work for me, both in setup and classroom management but I feel the learners were definitely more engaged perhaps more independent (at least once they do this again and realize they will get to do everything......some were 'desperate' to have a turn at certain tables!). The focus was on the alphabet with the ignitor being the book 'Alphabet Rescue', I discussed how important it is for capital and little letters to work together, just like they do in the book. I also reminded them how important they are so their name always needs a capital letter.....I role modeled this on the board and we shook each other's hand telling our partner just how important they are to us and our class.
The 6 stations were 'ABC Dough' using letter mats and play dough., 'ABC QTips' using cotton bud painting dots (for fine motor skills) and letter templates, 'ABC LEGO' but I actually used duplo and upper and lowercase letter cards, 'ABC Build' using A3 letters and laminated 'puzzle pieces, 'ABC Me' where learners chose the first letter of their name, glued in onto card, found the animal that started with that letter then cut and glued it to their letter (vital skills needed for the early years) and lastly 'ABC Clips' where learners use pegs to identify the correct picture that starts with the letter on their strip. I found all the preprinted templates online and almost all were free, the couple I paid for were well worth it as they saved me hours of work and were visually well put together (I'm fussy as I only like real photographs and hate any clip art style resources!)
Learning targeted to the needs of the students...letter recognition, linking upper and lowercase letters, initial word sounds, cutting, gluing.....lots of fine motor skills.
Beaming smiles, letters letters and more letters....
I wonder what the kids will call me, today one said "I'm looking for the Apple Teacher"......and another said "Are you Mrs Maker?" ......funny.