Welcome to Kindergarten!
Kindergarten has changed! It is definitely not what it used to be. Students are held to higher standards and our expectations as teachers are high. Gone are the days of nap-time and coloring. Our kindergarteners are writing independently and reading for comprehension. We are solving mental math problems and working in science labs.
We are learning every day!
Kindergarteners come in at every level. Some students are reading and some are working on learning letters. Regardless of the starting point, students will be taught in small groups focusing on skills needed to be successful.
The following are areas that will help your children make the transition into Kindergarten a smooth one. Students should be able to:
- Use self-help skills (i.e. feed themselves, bathroom independently, button, zip, buckle, etc.)
- Recognize their first name in print
- Listen and talk about stories that are read to them
- Share ideas in complete sentences
- Use tools to develop fine motor control skills (i.e. scissors, crayons, pencils, etc.)
- Shoe tying
As parents, you can reinforce what is being taught at school by:
- Have your child listen to you read daily
- Review numbers and letters with your child
- Practice writing their names and numbers correctly (i.e. Tom, not TOM)
- Take time to look at your child’s class work and review areas where they have difficulty
Our goal is to not only grow students academically but socially as well. We aim to teach impulse control and communication through words. We want our students to recognize the importance of friendship and kindness on a daily basis. We look forward to teaching your child and working with you to give you both an amazing, learning-filled year in kindergarten.
KINDERGARTEN TIPS FOR PARENTS
- Dress appropriately
- Choose clothing that easily buckles, snaps, buttons, zips (restroom friendly)
- Choose shoes appropriate for outside play (no slip-on shoes) preferably tennis shoes. Please double-knot shoe laces if your child cannot tie their shoes.
- No large jewelry items (girls may wear small earrings)
- We share ALL supplies:
- No children’s names on supplies
- No brand names (Barbie, Hot Wheels, etc.)
- Please label first and last names on all PERSONAL items (inside backpacks, lunch boxes, jackets, hats, gloves)
- Read to your child daily for at least 20 minutes per day.
- Cupcakes for birthdays are served after recess in your child’s classroom. Cupcakes should be store bought - no cakes or pastries that required cutting)
- Check and sign daily folders each day. Please record nightly and read 20 minutes. Daily Folders contain developmentally appropriate homework and notes on behavior.
- Check and sign Tuesday Folders each week.
- After the first day, you will need to show ID and sign in at the front desk in order to walk your child to class. We suggest that you stay in your car and allow them to walk to class alone (staff and Safety Patrol members are present to assist)
- During dismissal for car riders, parents are asked to remain in the car. Parking and coming inside will require that you show ID and be checked in at the front counter.
- All volunteers must complete a Criminal Background form. This form is also required if you plan to attend your child’s field trip later in the year.
- Please do not purchase rolling backpacks. Backpacks should be large enough to hold a folder but should not have wheels.
What Will We Learn in Kindergarten?
Reading is taught in small groups and tailored to student’s individual needs. We will work on the strategies that create strong readers including phonological awareness, fluency and comprehension.
Our kindergarten word wall begins with our student names but later adds 2 words a week until January in which we add 3 words a week. Words are selected by frequency in text and letter combinations.
Writing is taught from Day 1. Students will learn the basic concepts including correct punctuation and capital letters to expanding and elaborating their voice with verbs and onomatopoeias.
Phonics is taught with a daily program that incorporates hand-writing and correct letter formation. Phonics emphasizes correct letter-sound correlation, letter-sound blends and common spelling patterns.
Math focuses on composing and decomposing numbers 0-20. Students will visually recognize and preform mental math while creating word problems to the sum of 20. We will work with graphing, 3-D shapes and skip-counting to 100.
In science we will learn a variety of topics as we work hands-on in labs with non-fiction text and vocabulary. Some units (but not all) include plants, the 5-senses, living and non-living, weather changes and seasons.
Our social studies units concentrate on holidays, our state of Texas and the contributions of Christopher Columbus, Stephen F. Austin and Jose Antonio Navarro.
Kindergarten students participate in a daily outclass that includes Library, Art, 2 different music classes, 2 different Physical Education classes and a science and math lab.
Jan Schiff Elementary follows the state of Texas kindergarten curriculum.