View Full Version : Circle Time (W/O Formal Curriculum)
12-22-2010, 08:04 AM
What all do you do during circle time if you don't use a "formal" (as in, professionally designed) curriculum?
(I'm curious about both preschool agers and if you have younger kiddos--my group right now is primarily 1.5-2, but they'll be getting older, obviously!)
12-22-2010, 08:48 AM
We always start with the "shake your wiggles out" song, followed by the calander. Then we usually read the book we're focusing on for the week. We then sing another song or two and do a fingerplay or two. We always sing about the letter we're learning and the letters we've learned so far ("A says aah song".) We also usually do a feltboard retelling of our book. We might read another book if there's one related to what we're doing, or a favorite of the kids at the time. We also talk about whatever shape and color we're learning about-usually by playing a little game or something.
The kids I have for circle are 18 months -4 years old. The younger they are the more 'active" i try to keep circle. More action songs with fewer words so they are easy to learn and lots of fingerplays, less talking and stories.
12-22-2010, 09:17 AM
My circle time starts with me singing "the more we get togehter" the children know that's the cue to join me. we do a music and movement to get their sillies out then we do a fingerplay, flannel story or puppet, read a book, have group discussion and then sing a dismissal song. I don't do calendar or alphabet, as that's covered in activities throughout the day. I make it as interactive as possible and allow the children to leave (they rarely do) if they aren't into it.
12-22-2010, 09:53 AM
I have all preschoolers, 3-5. Our circle time looks like this:
-Review yesterday's behavior (we have a behavior chart for positive reinforcement for happy faces)
-Calendar (actual date, special events for the month, identifying 'today' 'tomorrow' and 'yesterday')
-We sing a days of the week and months of the year song
-Weather song/weather circle/weather graph
-Review the letter of the week and it's movements (Ex: for K we hopped around like kangaroos and made kissy faces)
-Discuss our morning activities (Crafts, letter activities, etc).
12-22-2010, 10:02 AM
We first 'warm up our voices', by lightly tapping our chest/throat area and they repeat after me: "eee...ooo...eee...ooo..." and other sounds. The kids think it's hilarious and it helps them all join me for circle.
We then sing a couple of songs (icky sticky bubblegum, bringing home a baby bumblebee are the favorites right now).
We then might talk about what we're going to do for the day or talk about something going on in their lives. Sometimes we create an impromptu chart about something (how many boys or girls do we have/ which animals have tails or don't have tails...a couple of our recent charts that we made based on what they were talking about that day).
We also try to do a few movement songs (row, row row your boat where they grab eachother's hands and row back and forth), ring around the rosies or five monkeys jumping on a bed or play Freeze.
Sometimes we do instruments or play a game like "what's missing" or "who's missing" (put a blanket over a child and they have to figure out who's missing). We would do duck-duck goose, but we don't really have the space to run, so we do that outside.
Finally, sometimes I have the children bring in something from home, like "bring something BLUE in to share with friends". They bring it in a special color bag and then show everyone what they brought at circle time, kind of like show-n-tell. It allows each child a turn at being the 'leader' (even those that don't have much language yet share) and also keeps the attention of each of the children as they love seeing what everyone brought in.
btw, I have 2-3.5 yr olds and they ALL join very well with very little direction.
I LOVE hearing what everyone does at circle time, so I'm going to stalk this thread!
12-22-2010, 10:48 AM
I have this really fun Ralph's World Clean Up song with a funky reggae beat so when I put that on they know it's time to clean up. Then I use the Mother Goose Circle Time song to get everyone on the rug. They love to dance to it and then it has them sit down.
Then we go through the following every day:
- I tell them which helper they are going to be for the day (calendar, weather, story helper, snack, nap, etc.)
- Calendar Helper puts the next number on the calendar and we count together all the days in the month so far. Then we talk about what day of the week it is (any special events today, etc.), as well as what yesterday was and what tomorrow is. Then we sing our Days of the Week song (we sing it normal but say today's day loud, sing the whole song in a whisper, yell it, etc.) We mix that up each day
- Then we do the same with the month and we have our Months of the Year song
- Same thing with our weather song and the weather helper comes up and chooses the correct "weather stick" puts it in today's container and moves the weather arrows to match.
- Then we review our letters that we've learned since the beginning of the year and we go around the circle and each person comes up with a word that starts with that letter.
- Then we talk about our theme for the week/day and read a book that goes with our theme and anything else I may have that day that mixes in with the theme.
- Then I talk to them about our craft/art project for the day and we head off to start on craft.
My group's ages are 2 - 5.
**Edit - I just read that this was for those w/o a curriculum. I do use Mother Goose but with the exception of the circle time main song none of the songs I use/sing are MGT.
12-22-2010, 11:16 AM
We start with either "Let's join hands and make a circle ..." song or "The more we get together". Then we go around the circle and each person picks an action song to sing. I have a visual menu for songs that we sing so the non-verbal kids can also choose. Then we sing a days of the week song, count the days on the calendar up to the day it is, then talk about what the weather is outside, what kind of clothes we wear in that kind of weather, dress the weather bear (usually more when the weather is different than it has been), and then read a story.
12-22-2010, 11:57 AM
I have 5 - two-four year olds everyday. We start with "Come to the Circle", "Good Morning Dear Earth" and the "The More We Get Together" every day. Then we usually talk about what the weather is like, and what's happening to the earth (skunks are hibernating, but the squirrels are out, birds are changing, snow is covering the plants etc). I'll usually tell a little puppet show on my lap with very simple things as puppets (simetimes just pinecones or sticks) that relates to the season. I give each child a chance to share a little story of what they did over the weekend/evening if they want to. We sing a bunch of action songs/fingerplays and then we hold hands and do "Merry Meet" (everyone comes into the center of the circle - squishy) "And Merry Part" (everyone backs out again, still holding hands) "And Merry Meet Again" (squish back into the center). The kids all love the ending. Lasts about 15-30 minutes, depending on how much attention they have that day.
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