Kindergarten Virtual Style
The 2020-2021 school year is underway. This is year 27 for me in the classroom but this year is unlike ANY other. When I heard students would be starting the year virtually for at least 3 weeks my mind began racing! HOW would Kindergarten students start the year this way? What about Meet The Teacher? Are my students going to log on the first day?
Well after 10 days in I am happy to say it is going pretty good! My students are logging on 3 times a day and rocking their assignments. Now it has not been smooth sailing but, we are starting to find our groove. Here is what we have been working on these past few weeks.
Meet The Teacher
Meet The Teacher was done over Zoom. I had a slide show prepared with school information and a google form for my parents to fill out. I asked them to tell me about my new students.
I shared with my parents the communication app I use called Classtag.
I have been using this app for about a year and it is amazing. I love that it can translate to over 50 different languages. It makes it so easy for parents to sign up too. All my parents connected with in the first few days and we're all set for first meeting that following week.
Each morning I send a message out using Classtag with our Zoom link and the times we are meeting. I have kept my times the same each day. The first week we did a lot of getting to know you activities and read many many books.
Each time my kinders logged onto Zoom I would share my expectations and we practiced using the Zoom tools. How to mute, how to unmute, type your name in the chat, and more. These picture cards have been extremely useful
You can find this as a freebie in my resource library.
First Week Activities
During this week, I did not know how it would go. We practiced how to log on, use Zoom, mute, and unmute and find where we go later that day. We are using Canvas as our learning management system but all our work is being done in another platform that is MUCH more kindergarten friendly. 😉
One way I wanted the students to get to know each other was with my All About Me activity. I uploaded the slides to Seesaw and demonstrated everything showing off me. This way students could see what to do and get to know me as well.
As each student finished their slides we shared them over the Zoom sessions and we loved getting to know a little bit about each other.
I didn't really start any curriculum the first week. We ate snacks together, read some of my favorite back to school books, and just made sure we could access all the apps we would be using. Here are some of the books we read.
I really did not know what to expect. I did not want to “teach” I just really wanted to get to know my new students and for them to interact with each other. We zoomed 3 times a day and each time lasted about 15-20 minutes. I remember how short those attention spans at the beginning of the year!
I had 2 goals that week. For my students to be able to log on and for them to know how much I care for them. Even though we are not together in the classroom I feel like I crushed those goals. It was a great first week!