Our students are amazing! Many were born into poverty. Some are immigrants and refugees from other countries; some are currently experiencing homelessness. Despite difficulties and hardships in their early and current lives, they come to school with smiles, eager, ready, and willing to learn and grow as part of our kindergarten community.
We often spend our own money on necessities for students like clothing, sneakers, snacks, and books.
This doesn't allow us to purchase supplemental materials for the classroom that the district doesn't provide but which can enhance the kindergartners' learning and understanding immensely.
Many of our activities and lessons within the classroom are done using a variety of materials. One thing the students really enjoy is the interactive STEM problem solving activities, specifically math activities, that we call Solve and Shares. I will give students the necessary information but no other directions, and they must try to solve the math problem and then share how they were able to do so and what tools they used. Often, many students use various materials within the classroom to solve the problem correctly but in such different ways.
The students really enjoy solving the math and STEM Solve and Shares, but the share part can sometimes be a struggle.
Many of the students have limited English or receive speech services or are simply shy and freeze up when sharing how they solved the math problem.
I think if we had a large whiteboard to project the Solve and Share problem onto, some students could explain their thinking without needing to be verbal. They could use a dry erase marker along with the hands-on manipulatives to SHOW their thinking, and they would not have to say how they solved the Solve and Share.
It is my hope that a large wall mounted dry erase board will allow more students to participate actively in the share part of the Solve and Share during our math and STEM activities.
Students could also use the white board during other lessons to plan ideas or draw out sketches before getting right to work. For example, if the STEM challenge of the week is to build a chair that won't break when Goldilocks sits on it, then students can draw out their plan before getting right to work, editing the written plan easily on the white board as they build.
If you donated to this project, you can sign in to leave a comment for Ms. Smith.
DonorsChoose is the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.
As a teacher-founded nonprofit, we're trusted by thousands of teachers and supporters across the country. This classroom request for funding was created by Ms. Smith and reviewed by the DonorsChoose team.
DonorsChoose makes it easy for anyone to help a classroom in need. Public school teachers from every corner of America create classroom project requests, and you can give any amount to the project that inspires you.