Inside a kindergarten classroom with Augustana students

Off to A Great Start

Hello my name is Amanda Cash and I am excited to be starting work in the Number Sense Program. At the end of the first week of Number Sense, all I can think about is how lucky I am to have the privilege to continue working with the kindergartners at the local elementary school. I cherish any opportunity I have to work with students because of the knowledge and experience that I gain. Last term my partner and I went to the elementary school every Friday and taught a 20 minute lesson to a group of five kindergartners. We worked on skills that include rote counting, counting backwards, one-to-one correspondence, cardinality,  order irrelevance, and a few other skills.  Now for Number Sense my new partner and  I are pulling out students one at a time and working on the skills they need help with. The classroom that I am currently in for Number Sense was my clinical class last term so I already know the students and they know me. I truly believe that all this individualized instruction will really help not only  the students who are struggling, but the gifted students as well.

Mrs. C., my cooperative teacher for Number Sense, has records from the beginning of the second quarter on what skills the students still need help on. These records gave my partner and I a place to start and we began pulling the students who had significant need with the more basic skills. I instructed the first few students I pulled to  count as high as they could aloud for me. The first student I worked with was able to count to 20 before messing up. The second student I worked with got to 13 before messing up. A few other students I worked with on Wednesday had similar results. By now the kindergartners are suppose to be working on being able to count up to 50, so the ones that are not even making it out of the teens are going to be receiving more individualized attention from us so that we can help them get back on track. These students who could not count past 20 orally without having a mistake also had difficulty recognizing numbers greater than 10. One students when shown 11 said that the number was 2. She also said that the number 12 was 2 and that the number 13 was 3. I have a video that I used with my group last term that works on teen numbers that I think would interest this particular student.

The kindergartners are so eager to learn and they all want a turn being pulled out into the hallway to play games with my partner and I. On Friday we decided to pull the students that were marked on Mrs. C’s. sheet as not being able to count backwards from 10. This skill is quick and easy to test and allowed us to pull students who we have not seen too much of yet. All of the students that I pulled were able to count backwards from 10 even though the sheet we were looking at had them marked down as not being able to complete that skill. My partner and I created a sheet of our own with the skills written out at the top where we could mark the students off as they demonstrate that they can preform a certain skill. It is amazing how once a skill clicks with a student they get it. The results we are looking at are from the beginning of the students 2nd quarter. Somewhere between then and now the students learned how to count backward from 10. Mrs. C. was happy to hear that and informed us that every day as she tries to get the students to quiet down she counts backwards from 10 so she was happy they were listening to her count backwards and caught on. This made my partner and I realize that we need to keep accurate up to date records of what the students can and cannot do so we do not spend time going over a skill they already know how to do even though the sheet we are using as a base line says they need help on that skill. They are learning and growing every day and I am so excited to see the students be able to preform and complete skills they were not able to before.

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