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Saturday, August 4, 2012

911!!! I need a Kindergarten teacher!! HEEEELLLP!!


I know this is my second post of the day but I am really and truly freaking myself out and need help.

I got asked to teach KINDERGARTEN starting on Monday. Monday is the first day back for these kiddos. I am trying to find out if I have access to the room to prepare or not. I am just the sub filling in until they can hire someone OR we may turn me into a teaching intern and it could be mine for the entire year. The jury is still out on this one.
So we don't know if I will have access or not. We don't know if the room is set up or not but we can assume not and I have no lesson plans prepared. I have never taught procedures before. I was planning on learning how to set up a classroom next week and take notes watching others teach procedures.


Hubby says not to worry they are only 2 feet tall. 
I reminded him that the most poisonous scorpions are the babies.

I asked hubby and he said that it was best that I say yes and be willing to take one for the team. I love my school district and I know they will support me but YIKES. I need help. Here is my list of questions... you know I am gonna be pinteresting and blogstalking for Kindergarten first day ideas.

1 - Do I simply teach procedures how I would do it?
2 - What do I tell parents who arrive? Ummm... hopefully we will have a teacher for ya soon but if not you are stuck with me!
3 - What activities should I have planned for the first day(s) of school?
4 - Should I bring the kids a treat?
5 - Do Kindergarteners take naps?

Breathe - in and out, in and out!

Right now, I will be with the kids for the entire first week of school guaranteed. If they hire someone she/he will start on week 2 at the earliest. 

Where to begin!!!?? 
And HOW?
That is my biggest question!

Labels: , ,


At August 4, 2012 at 8:09 AM , Blogger Sara said...

Kissing Hand for sure :) We went on a "search" for Chester, and did a school tour looking for him! While at places like the cafeteria for example, we would go over the procedures. Also have a lot of coloring and dancing for them :)

I let my kindergartens take "rest break" (some would sleep) for the first month and a half or so of school...decreased the time each week, until they were used to being awake all day :)

At August 4, 2012 at 8:28 AM , Blogger Mrs. Lundquist said...

Whole Brain Teaching! Google whole brain teaching for kindergarten and watch the you tube videos. There are plenty of free downloads out there for the rules, etc.
Playdo! I always gave my kinders playdo the first morning and while I was trying to take attendance, luch counts, etc. they got to play with their playdo. It stays in the desk, the first few weeks for those who get finished early, etc.
Great read alouds and music! Kissing Hand, any Eric Carle books, and Dr. Jean, Jack Hartman music.
Remember...their attention span is short. Take breaks and transition often. :) Good luck!

At August 4, 2012 at 8:55 AM , Blogger Debbie said...

Go for it Missy! I am sure you read Wong's "First days of School".....activities around "Kissing hand:....Miss Blindergarten......(I have a lesson if you need it)....Any Eric Carlie book.......make crafts.....just concentrate on the first day and plan as you go along.....everything will be fine! Congrats!

At August 4, 2012 at 10:10 AM , Blogger Mrs D said...


I second the suggestion for Whole Brain teaching, it gives a great first day routine, just view the videos in the middle of the home page.

I've heard of subs in my district being called at the last minute to cover a class and ultimately being hired for it, and others who were not, but were praised by the teacher who ultimately took over the class for how organized the kids were when they get there. It often turns into a term for them later in the year!

I've never taught K, but
I know you'll do fine!

At August 4, 2012 at 10:33 AM , Blogger Tales of a First Grade Teacher said...

first of all-- BREATHE!
You will be fine. 1 moment at a time.
We all have been posting about books and activities for back to school. Go to First Grade Found ME--she had a linky party with a ton of links to great ideas.
2nd--routines, routines, routines.
3rd--find out how they go home, and make a label for them, mark it on the class list, and if they don't know call home on your planning to find out. You don't want anyone missing a bus.
The first days, can be crazy, but only if you let them. You can email me anytime if you have any questions.

At August 4, 2012 at 11:27 AM , Blogger Debbie said...

The very first thing with these little guys is they will need to know many things, so teach them what they need to know to make it through a basic day.
1. If there is another kindergarten teacher in the building....USE HER MORNING PROCEDURE...and her 1st day plans. (Then make it your own)
2. Use your rules definately and if the principle says to say you are the the teacher (when and if it changes...tell them then)
3. Show them where their space is...this is your room....your desk...this is how to get to the lunchroom...this is your door that you use for recess...this is what it looks like from the inside...and the outside....this is how to find the restroom... take the whole group on a tour of the classroom, then the basic places they will travel to during the day and stop at the restroom
and go over the procedures of going to the restroom....teach and tell thses things several times the first days. Your first day you will only do a few actual school things...mostly how and where we do things at school. Get everyone quiet...tell them and then have them practice...even lining up is a lesson for the first day.

At August 4, 2012 at 2:05 PM , Blogger Becky said...

You weren't joking when you said 911! That link is to a first day of kindergarten linky party. I found tons of first day ideas there!

As far as what to tell parents, I would ask the principal.

Have you read Daily 5? I plan on introducing my procedures the way they introduce Daily 5 routines (Modeling, students model the incorrect way and then the correct way, whole class practices).

Deanna Jump was posting her daily plans for a while, you might be able to find some activities there too.

I hope that helps!
Lesson plans & Lattes

At August 4, 2012 at 3:01 PM , Blogger Diving Into Learning said...

You need a routine. And stick to it.

Read lots of books. Check out Pete the Cat and Skippyjon Jones (my pre-k students love those books). Plus they are audio books which is great.

Don't plan any activities to last more than 10-15 minutes because their attention spans won't last much longer than that.

Give very clear directions before transitions.

Name tags on students and put how they get home. Plus I would make a chart for the classroom with this information (and any allergies).

You can check out my pinterest boards which focus on pre-k and kindergarten activities and there are boards that focus on freebies. There are arts and crafts ideas, games and worksheets.

Hope this helps!

At August 4, 2012 at 3:09 PM , Blogger Stacey Kaiser said...

I do magic play dough on the first day (this is play dough that I make at home, the white kind, that I make into a ball and poke a little hole in it- drop a couple of drops of food coloring in the hole and then cover it up.) I tell the kids that I took my class list over to the teacher store and asked them if they could tell me if we were going to have a great year. They gave me these bags of play dough (I make sure that I have each child's name on it) and tell them that if their play dough turns a different color then they will have a great year. I ask the kids who thinks their play dough will turn another color. Then they go back to their seats and I have them start to play with their play dough in the bag. That way the food coloring doesn't stain any hands. =) While they are playing with their play dough I go around and take a picture of each child with their special play dough. I will then make this into a class book for them to read the next day. We also graph the color the play dough turned.

At August 4, 2012 at 3:49 PM , Blogger Chrissy said...

Congratulations!!!!! I hope it turns into a full-time posiition for you.

I also do "magic playdo" (def use the bag, it does stain while mixing). The links that were shared in other comments are overflowing with good ideas. Also, check Deedee Wills' blog posts from last August--she posted her plans, too.

Refer the questioning parents to the office staff while telling them that you are absolutely delighted to be teaching kindergarten during this exciting time of the school year! :-)
hugs, Chrissy

At August 4, 2012 at 4:42 PM , Blogger Barbara said...

Take them on a tour . . . invite the guidance counselor to come in and do a little introduction . . . sing, dance, and laugh with them. Teach them some fun songs. Laura Candler hosted a linky party for Creating A Caring Classroom last week - many GREAT ideas! Here's a link:
Creating A Caring Climate

And SMILE - a lot!! Have fun; I can't WAIT to hear how it goes. Couple of books you might want to read if you've got access to them: Wemberly Worried by Kevin Henkes, It's Not Easy Being Five by Jamie Lee Curtis, Polka-dot Fixes Kindergarten by Catherine Urdahl.

And don't forget recess!! Kindies need to play.

The Corner On Character

At August 4, 2012 at 6:06 PM , Blogger Jill said...

Whole Brain Teaching!! I am so happy to see other WBT comments here too! I've started with Kissing Hand, but I am now in LOVE with Pete the Cat. I might use Chester for an afternoon read, but my new focus this year is Pete. Last year I didn't even have the book yet and we used the you tube (great song with it) I also use Jack Hartmann for routines, welcome and calendar songs especially. Many of these are on you-tube too (hope you can do that) Just remember small chunks and lots of review. How to stand up, review, lining up review. and if at all possible, visit the cafe and "practice lunch procedures" BEFORE lunch. Your focus is routines, their focus is safety/ connections. Balance each of these through fun small activities. You are welcome to email me anytime, I can share some things I've made. If you find that you have harcourt storytown I've got a bunch :) Good Luck.

At August 4, 2012 at 6:41 PM , Blogger Mrs. Wathen said...

Not so much what they will do, but what will they have??? Be ready to take supplies from them, their parens, and out of their backpacks! Get bin or even large brown bags from the grocery store, label themand have the kids help you sort them. Does anyone have pencils... collect them...

No, David! and David Goes to School are great books for rules.

Have a class list waiting for when they walk in the door and ask the parent to check off bus, car, daycare,walk...

Good luck!
The Resourceful Apple

At August 5, 2012 at 12:38 AM , Blogger M said...

Wow Misty, there are some great comments. Totally important that you get the routines down. I was a supply and contract teacher for five years before I got a permanent job. I have been in your position loads of times... a few days to prepare (sometimes less) not able to get into the classroom etc etc.
My focus will be on resources
1. Definitely make friends with neighbouring teachers (even if they are 1st grade) they can help you out with whole school procedures and where to find resources etc. They may even have extra supplies. This is is especially important if you don't know what you will have.
2. Collect all the supplies and I would say, sort yourself. The kiddos won't know what to do and if you aren't sure what you are getting it will be hard to plan ahead.
3. Plan your day with lots of movement and activities (and repetition) but make sure they require little if no set up and resources. e.g. lots of "copy me" type games with clapping patterns and simon says, singing and finger plays. Kids love to draw etc.
4. Outside play is good.
5. Other people have mentioned books... if you have a couple at home you can take in and build a drawing/ craft activity from that it will keep them busy.

Main Focus for you today: Get through day one.

If you think of something that you need to now, write it down straight away and take your list to the neighbouring teacher/ principal and get the answers you need.

A list of essentials (one emergency teacher to another)
-A ball (you can do lots of things with a ball)
-ream of paper
-coloured pencils... enough to share around
-cd player/ music (if you can)
-whiteboard markers and chalk
-picture/story book or two
-lead pencils (again enough for everyone)

A word of advice in terms of "who is the teacher"... You are the teacher. If and when someone else is taking over, then you can tell them. Parents need to feel confident that there children are in the right hands (from day one)... you don't want them questioning you know or later, so be the teacher because you are the teacher.

Good Luck!!! I'm so excited and nervous for you!!!

my email: if you have any questions :)
You can do it!

At August 5, 2012 at 10:46 AM , Blogger Corrina Allen said...

Congrats!! I was asked to sub kindergarten as well right after my student teaching. Sounds like you already have lots of great advice and knowing'll rock Kindergarten!! I'll only add this: carry a tissue with you AT ALL TIMES. I once had to wipe a student's nose on my attendance sheet. Ha! Can't wait to hear about all your stories. :-)

Mrs. Allen’s 5th Grade Files

At August 5, 2012 at 8:43 PM , Blogger Ann Spencer said...

Glad you found the "First day of kindergarten" linky and WBT info and Pinterest. Wow! Isn't technology amazing?! I think you have enough advice to feel confident. They will love you!


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