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Math

The Benefits of Morning Work

Each morning after circle time, my students go to their tables for morning work. I believe making time for morning work each day is so important in kindergarten because it serves as routine, reinforces weekly learning and promotes independence.

Benefits of Morning Work

1. Routine

Having a solid routine gives students the ability to be successful because they know what to expect. Every single day, students in my room know that we will begin at the carpet for our morning circle, then we’ll go to our tables and complete the morning work. Our morning work focuses on language arts and math skills that we have learned earlier in the week or in the prior week. Although the worksheets and skills change, the directions and activities stay the same. This creates routine in the worksheet and promotes independence.

2. Independence

Believe it or not, kindergarten students can be independent. By creating an expected routine and modeling the different activities on the morning work, students learn exactly what they need to do. Before you know it, they don’t need you to model or read the directions! Morning work can give students the confidence to feel independent in other subjects and in other areas of the classroom.

Benefits of Morning Work

3. Reinforce Learning

The biggest and most important aspect of morning work is that it reinforces weekly learning. The morning work that my students complete follow along with the skills we learn in our language arts program as well as skills learned in math. In the beginning of the year, students work on finding and matching letters, sounding out words and counting. By the end of the year, they are circling nouns, correcting sentences and adding and subtracting. Morning work is a great opportunity to see how your students are retaining the skills learned in language arts and math.

Kindergarten Morning Work Bundle

Check out my Kindergarten Morning Work Bundle that you can use for your entire school year! This bundle comes with six units, which is broken down into six-weeks per unit, one sheet of morning work per day.

Morning Work Bundle

What benefits do you find in having students begin the day with morning work?

Circle Time: What does it look like in kindergarten?

Each morning, the first thing we do is come to the rug for circle time. I find that starting with circle is a great way to start the day because it is a routine that students know well and sets our day up right away for the learning ahead.

Circle Time Routine:

As students come into the classroom and put their stuff away, I play a good morning song. Students know that once the song ends, they need to be at the carpet ready for circle.

Calendar

To begin, we start with the months of the year song. We discuss what month we are currently in, which month it was before and what month it will be after.

Then, we sing the days of the week song. After the song ends, I choose a student to tell us what day it is today. Next, we discuss the date and I put the calendar piece on the calendar. Students repeat the full date (example: Today is January 25, 2017).

The calendar helper comes up and moves around the days of the week cards. The calendar helper is the leader during this part of circle and says what day it is, what yesterday was and what tomorrow will be. The rest of the class repeats after the calendar helper.

Example:

Calendar Helper: “Today is Wednesday”
Class Repeats: “Today is Wednesday”

Calendar Helper: “Yesterday was Tuesday”
Class Repeats: “Yesterday was Tuesday”

Calendar Helper: “Tomorrow will be Thursday”
Class Repeats: “Tomorrow will be Thursday”

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Place Value

After calendar is over, our place value helper comes up and adds one straw to our place value chart. This helper also changes the days in school card and announces what day we are on in kindergarten. I love this portion of circle because it reinforces place value and we discuss making bundles. Students loveΒ when we get to make a BIG bundle on the 100th day of school!

Weather

Once we’ve discussed what day of school it is, we sing a weather song. After the song is over, the weather monitor comes up and changes the weather and temperature cards. They announce to the class what the weather is today.

Letter of the Day (Beginning of the year)

In the beginning of the year, we have a letter of the day. During this time, I introduce the letter and we watch the Zoophonics video (just that letter and the previous letters we’ve learned). I like the Zoophonics program because it discusses the letter, sound and makes a movement for students to kinesthetically connect to the letter.

Circle Time Materials

Songs

In the above sections, I’ve linked the songs I play. I put these on a SmartBoard lesson with a picture and we sing them as we get to that part in our circle time.

Circle Time Set

I’ve created a circle time set of the posters and all the cards you’ll need to set up your own circle time. There are three versions: a bright colors theme, jungle theme and a black and white ink saver.

What circle time routines do you have in your classroom?