I teach in a highly populated school of English Learners. They come to school with doubts that their language will inhibit their ability to learn, yet they do their best every day to overcome those challenges. Their love of learning shines through their eyes. They are excited and motivated to do their best.
For most of my students, this is the first time they have stepped foot in a classroom.
They do not understand the norms of classroom etiquette yet they come to school every day with a smile on their face ready to do their best. They not only learn academics they learn social behaviors which will follow them for the rest of their lives.
My students come to school every day ready to learn. Ready to be their best. Ready to be believed in. I want to show them that I too come to school ready to be the best that I can be for them. Although they have challenges in their lives I want them to know that together we can overcome those challenges; together we can be the best Kindergarten class there can be!
Students are required to know letter names and sounds, as well as some phonological skills such as rhyming, syllables, and beginning sounds coming into Kindergarten. Unfortunately, this is not always the case as most of my class come into Kindergarten with no previous educational experience. This means that they are already behind. Some students (less than half) will learn those skills rapidly and have a chance to be great readers by the end of kindergarten. For most of my class, however, this is not always the case. There is so much they have to learn that many have a hard time catching up on letters and sounds and those phonological skills like rhyming words syllables, beginning sounds are lost.
Then we have English Learners who fall behind in syllables and rhyming because they do not have as much exposure in their native language.
Unfortunately, there are not enough hours in the day or more adult support, to provide that one-on-one or small group support that many of my students need.
These alphabet and phonological awareness activities will provide my students with much-needed practice and the best part is the students get to play these games independently and they are learning! All students love to and learn from touch. These hands-on alphabets and phonological awareness activities will provide my students with a chance to be independent learners while giving them that hands-on experience that kids need and desire. From building short CVC words using the letter tiles to recognizing lowercase letters using the magnetic letters students are always engaged in the activity because they get to manipulate the pieces vs watching as the teacher models or using paper and pencil.
All students will be engaged in the learning and these activities will allow for all students to grow.
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