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Sunday, February 25, 2007

Routines Schedule

Two of the comments on my "tricks" post reminded me of something I use at school that could easily be adapted for home. I started out teaching 4th grade for one year. That year, I had a white board that listed the times and events of the day, so the children would know what was happening. When I moved down to kindergarten, I brought that same idea with me. I used the computer and made a sign for each activity we did with a picture. I stuck them on construction paper, laminated each one, and put a magnet on the back. On one of our big chalk boards, I have morning activities listed and afternoon activities listed. I still remember during that first year, before I finished making the schedule, the children would always be asking me "What's next" or "When do we..." After the schedule went up, everyone's life got a lot easier! They could tell just by looking what was going to happen, which took out the mysteries and surprises of the day. I have a few question marks laminated for when activities come up that don't fit one of the pre-made signs. When the kids spot the question mark, they immediately ask what's happening at that time!

I can see how this could easily be adapted for home use, with signs for breakfast, play time, tv time, outside time, shopping trips, etc. I know you can get paint that turns a surface magnetic, or lacking that you could use velcro dots and a flannel board, or use a pocket chart, etc.

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