Friday, August 31, 2007

Friendship Theme Ideas

More Friendship Theme Ideas
I have a frienship/anti-bullying activity that I use for students who are a bit older and can understand the symbolism - but I think it's a good one some teachers out there might like or pass on to their friends. Basically, you have the students stand in a circle on a laminate floor space (gym or something). You pass an apple around the circle of students and after each person takes the apple they have to say something nice to the apple and then gently pass it to the next person (ex: apple you are so beautiful! Pass to next person). Once it comes back to the teacher, teacher will ask the students to describe what the apple looks like based on all the wonderful things "apple" has heard. Explain, this is how we feel when all we hear about ourselves is NICE stuff. We are beautiful and intact emotionally etc. Next, apple will go around the circle again but this time it's a bit different. Teacher will tell the students to now say something bad to the apple and proceed to GENTLY drop it on the floor each time(ex: apple I hate you - drop the apple on the floor then pick it up and pass to next person). The apple will go around the circle and by the time it comes back to the teacher it's either a messy exploded pulp or at least very bruised and beat up (not so beautiful anymore). Teacher will explain that this is what happens to us as people when all we hear is negative stuff. Ask the students what they would prefer to be? Ask students how we can work to make sure we are all kept safe and made to feel that way? And if teacher later sees students hurting each other, s/he can easily refer back to the apple analogy. It makes for a very powerful visual image of how words can hurt and destroy other's sense of self. Michelle Bechthold

More Friendship Theme Activities

Monday, August 20, 2007

More Alphabet and Literacy Suggestions

Below you will find more suggestions from newsletter subscribers as to activities they do to help children learn the alphabet.

1. A wonderful activity that I use in the preschool classroom to teach alphabet recognition is a game we play called little mouse. I made 26 little houses out of felt to use on a felt board. Each house has a letter of the alphabet on the door. I also made a mouse out of felt. Some of the houses are placed on the felt board with the mouse hiding under one of them. The children take turns guessing which house the mouse is under, chanting, "Little mouse,little mouse, are you in the (the child picks a letter)house?" The children want to play it again and again!
Barbara Angulo
2. I used to make a grid and write the letters of each child's name in one square of the grid until the entire grid was filled up. Then I would let the children color all the (example) J's the same color, all the O's, etc. the end product would have an intersting pattern if the grid was made to contain more squares than the number of letters in the name. Karen DeHerrera