Kindergarten Boot-Camp

March 30th, 2008

For those of you keeping track, no, my class still has not earned everything back. In fact, on Friday (a half-day, nonetheless) they lost some of the stuff the earned back. They were so close and then they had to go a screw it all up again.

We were doing shaving cream art. This is an activity that I save for days right before a vacation or days when not too many kids are in school (like half-days). It involves giving every kid a glob of shaving cream and letting them smear it all over their table. They practice writing numbers and letters in it and in the process it cleans of the tables. Plus, to clean it up all they have to do is rub it until it disappears and then I just wipe the soap slime off the table with a wet rag. It’s also a time when they can (in theory) sit and chat with their friends, listen to a fun cd and get a little messy.

But not Friday. Oh no. Friday they started off great. Everyone was ready and excited for shaving cream art. They spent the first few minutes using it correctly (and my rules are pretty simple – use your own glob, don’t clap your hands or slap the table because it splatters it everywhere, and stay in your seat) we had music on, there was a lot of good conversation and then something in their little brains fired off and all 18 of them went berserk. They were tearing around the room, stealing shaving cream from other tables, shouting at each other, flinging it everywhere. So shaving cream was done. They spent the next 5-10 minutes cleaning it all up and the last 10 minutes of art with their heads down practicing being quiet. So art’s gone again for awhile.

I don’t mind if we spend the rest of the year practicing how to act like 5 and 6 year olds. They actually seem to do better when they have less things to choose from. I really think that this group gets over-stimulated very quickly and does better with way less options.

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