Working In Kindergarten? Here’s How To Make It Both Fun And Professional
Do you love working with kids? Do you want to make a difference in their lives while earning an income for yourself? Working in kindergarten can be both fun and professional.
This blog post will discuss how to make your classroom into a safe, nurturing environment where the children are engaged and learning at every moment.
Establish Rules And Expectations
The most important thing that a teacher can do when working with children in kindergarten is to establish rules and expectations. You should have systems in place so they understand what is expected from them.
For example, you might say “We line up quietly” early on before anything happens or any disruptions occur. When there are no distractions present, it will be easy for your students to calm down and follow this rule without issues.
You should also make sure all of the routines are consistent each day at school, otherwise, your class may become confused about what’s acceptable behavior throughout their time together. If one person isn’t following along with everyone else because he thinks his way is better than yours, it will only lead to chaos.
PALS certification is important for all educators, especially those working with young students. The training and resources that you receive through PALS recertification will help you create a safe environment for your students.
Be sure that whatever rules you put in place are reasonable and age-appropriate, as kindergartners may not be able to handle the same expectations as older students. But do make sure that there are SOME expectations, or else they will feel like they can get away with anything.
Some good basic ground rules could include: following directions the first time they’re given, sitting on their bottoms for most of the day (unless actively engaged in an activity), keeping hands and feet to themselves, raising their hand if they want to speak or ask a question, etc.
As long as you reinforce these expectations regularly and give positive feedback when your students demonstrate them properly, they’ll likely start to adopt these as their rules to live by.
Follow Up To Ensure Rules Are Being Followed
You may need to remind students of the rules and consequences at times. If a student misbehaves, talk with them about what happened and how they can fix it next time. You should also ask why they did not follow directions or listen in class, so you have their side of the story as well.
Follow up with parents if necessary to find out more information on where the child is struggling academically, behaviorally, or emotionally.
Keep your door open for communication by sending home notes such as daily activity logs that include positive comments from peers and adults, sending home note cards on special days like birthdays, or informing parents through written reports sent via email monthly (with permission).
Provide Children With The Materials They Need
One of the best ways to get children engaged in their education is through sensory learning. This can be achieved by giving them something tangible, such as color-coded flashcards or sandpaper letters.
For example, if you are working with colors and shapes, place one object of each on a table so that they may touch it while saying its name out loud. This will help them retain the information better.
You can also bring in other props, such as puppets or stuffed animals, to help keep their attention. Just be sure not to use them too often or else they will lose their appeal.
For children to feel like they are in a professional setting, they must have the tools they need at their disposal. This means having enough materials for each student and making sure everything is organized.
If you have a large class, consider using stations where children rotate through different tasks. This way, everyone has a chance to participate and no one gets bored.
Keep A Positive Attitude
One of the best ways to make your job as a kindergarten teacher enjoyable and fulfilling is to have a positive attitude. Be upbeat and friendly with your students, colleagues, and parents.
By maintaining a good attitude, you will create a positive learning environment for your students. Additionally, having a positive outlook will help you weather any challenging situations that may arise during the school year.
Be sure to consider your well-being as well. Make time for yourself and do things that you enjoy, such as yoga or reading a book in the park. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes, no one is perfect. What matters most is how we handle them when they happen and learn from our errors moving forward.
Kindergarteners’ minds are full of imagination, so it’s important to encourage this creativity. You can do so by giving them creative projects and letting them use their imaginations while they work on these tasks.
This is especially helpful if you’re working with students who have special needs because it allows them to express themselves in a way that doesn’t feel restrictive or negative for either the student or teacher. The more open your classroom feels, the better!
Work With Parents To Help Children
Kindergarten is the first time most children are in school, so they’re often introduced to new concepts of how to behave socially. Here’s an example: if a child doesn’t want another child to play with his or her toys at preschool, he or she may yell and scream until that other child leaves them alone.
If that happens once or twice, it’s not usually something teachers think much about – but what if this behavior becomes more common? Perhaps instead of sitting down for circle time by themselves without looking upset every day after being excluded from playing, these students start screaming “I don’t have any friends!” across the classroom when called on during lessons because they feel left out of the group activities altogether.
It may not seem like a big deal, but this behavior can hurt other students’ feelings. If you work with parents to help children develop healthy social skills, it will make the classroom environment more positive for everyone involved.
Working in a kindergarten can be one of the most rewarding jobs you will ever have. It is also a great place to start your teaching career. By following these tips, you can make your experience both fun and professional.