Saturday, August 29, 2009

Getting Started and Materials

We have been in school for 3 full weeks and 2 days so far. I have been very pleased with my start. I am chomping at the bit to get into "work time", but I know I MUST get work routines and classroom expectations down before I let them go or I will be crazy! So far I have done the pink tower presentation and everyone had a chance to build it once, the geometric solid presentation, intro to the decimal system parts 1,2, and 3 with beads only (teaching ones, tens, hundreds, thousands), the bead stair (in small groups), and pink/blue words with moveable alphabet (with 2 students). I realized this evening (while in the car on my way to pick up dinner) that I need to develop a checklist that I can keep on a clipboard with the tasks I am using a place to date when I observe the introduction, practice, and mastery. I think this will keep me up to date on everyone's needs. So if anyone is interested I will be happy to share when I get this finished.
The materials I ordered from Caliber Montessori and Alison's. I was very happy with the prices and quality from Caliber. I am not as thrilled wih Alison's. I have written to them and will post their response when I receive it.

***I did receive a reply from Alison's. They offered to allow me to return the bead stair for a refund. I didn't. I wanted them to send me the holder for the bead stair instead of me returning it and reordering. I felt this would be the fair thing since they misrepresented the product by showing it in the picture and not indicating that it was NOT included in the description. Oh, well I only ordered from them to get the introduction to the decimal system set that was on clearance. I won't be using them anymore.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Tasks I've Created So Far

I've printed, laminated, cut, gathered, ordered new things and these are the tasks I have so far for my work time. I finally thought to take pictures so I could post them.
We have had 5 days of school so far. We are finishing our first week today!
I am loving using these Montessori lesson presentations.
I started with the pink tower presentation. I did it to the large group and let them come up one at a time and practice making the tower. Next I did a geometric solid lesson whole group and passed around the solids so they could see them and touch them.
I have broken my children up into small groups so I could do a bead stair presentation (numbers 1-9) to each group and better get a grasp on their needs. In a very unMontessori like fashion, I put 6-7 children at the DVD center to watch Chrysanthemum (a story we had read) and then a sight word DVD, 4-5 at the computer center, and then I did a quick presentation of a play doh name task to 3-4 students, so I was able to pull 4 for bead stair. I have 19 children and do not have an assistant at any time so this was the best I can do for small group work. When I get children working, I hope to be able to work individually with them.

On my math shelf I have the pink tower ( I ordered), geometric solids (I had these just had to make the cards), 2 pocket charts for hundred boards and number cards 1-100 and 101-200, introduction to the decimal system set x2 (I ordered these), number cards and counters (made the cards, I had the counters), bead stair and number cards to 9, seguin board and tens board (Imade these), extra bead stairs (I ordered), and put back for later bead cubes that I ordered. Overall I spent around $100 for these materials.

My language shelf seems a little lacking to me and I did realize that I don't have any 3 part cards for word study or sentence/picture match cards. So back to the laminator I go. On the shelf I have the play doh names task, pink and blue series short a magnetic cards with magnetic letters, 2 magnetic short a word family tasks, some other pictures of short a words for building with magnetic letters, and 2 trays with different levels of yes/no question cards (from they are like pink and blue series levels) that they can use in the pocket charts if they wish to sort by yes or no.

My little divided trays are childrens trays I picked up a few at a time at Dollar General this summer, the tiny baskets are at Dollar General now, the larger basket trays I ordered from Oriental Trading.