Friday, February 17, 2012

Everything I Learned in Kindergarten Yesterday

Yesterday, I had the privilege of subbing in kindergarten. I have not spent much time in kinder. In the four years I have subbed, I think all of three days have been in kinder. So, I was feeling excited, nervous, and a little bit scared. I arrived at the school my usual 30 minutes early to prepare myself, locate everything necessary, and review the lesson plans. It all turned out beautifully! The kiddos were great, and we all had a lot of fun. I did make a few observations, so here is a list of everything I learned in kindergarten yesterday...

Kinders are used to routines. Most students are, but nowhere is this more apparent than in kindergarten, espcially during calendar time. Choruses of, "That's not how we do it!" rang out around the room. So I changed my strategy and told them that I needed help. I would choose helpers to "do it the right way" by who was sitting quietly. The rest of calendar went smoothly.

Kinders are loving. I had been there an hour with students whom I had never met, when no fewer than 3 students said, "I love you!" and gave me a hug.

Kinders are a good workout. I came home with my quad muscles aching, and I couldn't figure out why. Then I remembered all the up and down I had done. Squatting down to meet them at their level makes for quite the leg workout. I decided that I would have wicked thighs if I taught kinder all the time!

Kinders are fun. I spent the day singing songs, reading books, coloring, cutting, and pasting.

Kinders are appreciative. I was reading the second book of the day, which happened to be The Three Billy Goats Gruff." I was using my best "troll" voice. One student giggled every time I spoke in "troll." And then another pops up with, "Ms. F, you sure are a good reader!" Why, thank you! Ha!

Kinders are exhausting! It was a day of love, fun, and learning, but I came home pooped! I realized it's that there is no downtime in a kinder classroom. There is no "work on this while I get the next lesson prepped." And I am pretty sure they broke a record for the number of times my name has been spoken in one day.

So, hats off to all you full-time kinder teachers! You have my utmost respect for doing all that every single day. Feel free to share your kinder teaching and subbing observations.


  1. Sounds like you hit the nail on the head. As a kinder teacher, I can agree with you. Routines are very important. That's why the first month of school is spent with just learning those routines. But by the end of the everything is running pretty smooth and your not quite so "pooped" by the end of the day. Best part: yes they are loving, and wonderful to be with each day. I love it.

  2. Sounds like you had a great day! My favorite thing about kinders is their loving attitude. It always gives me a big smile for the whole day.


    The Crazy Adventures of a University Graduate

  3. This is my first year as a kindergarten teacher. I lost 18 lbs in the first six weeks of school due to all the movement! I called it my Kindergartne Diet :D I love my students and they think I am the best teacher in the whole world.

  4. I absolutely love kindergarten!!! I miss it tremendously!

  5. Hahaha :) I sub in kinder a lot!

    Everything you said is so true! And they think you can color the best and do everything the best. And everything you do amazes them :)

    Journey of a Substitute Teacher

  6. You painted a perfect picture of kindergarten. I love it when they tell me I am the best teacher they ever had, it doesn't matter that I am the only teacher they have ever had. Chek out my post today for a cute true kinder story.


  7. Your post made me smile Rachel! Thanks - so sharing this with my fb friends!
    - Leslie

  8. Reading this made me smile. Those things are exactly why I love teaching kindergarten (and for now, subbing in kinder until I can get a classroom of my own again)! They are so loving and so excited to learn new things. I love feeding off their energy and enthusiasm. And as a sub, I actually find it easier to manage them than some of the older kids since I usually find them to be so eager to please. Yeah for kindergarten!

  9. It is odd how we learn to be less loving, respectful and considerate. I'm in 2nd grade and I can see that it's started already. Glad you like the little ones.

  10. Your observations were spot on! My first two years teaching were in kindergarten and I always said- kindergarten is a different beast! I laughed when I read what you said about the calendar routine because that is the one thing that kindergarteners ALWAYS correct subs on!! "THAT'S NOT HOW WE DO IT!!!" They just cannot handle the change! haha. Thanks for sharing! I enjoy your blog so much, especially because I have recently returned to subbing daily until another job opportunity arises :(

    The Eager Teacher

  11. I am a full time kinder teacher and I love it! The first year was a little hard, but 11 years later and you wouldn't be able to drag me away, unless....maybe to go to a preschool classroom! They love you unconditionally and show it!
    meet me at the zoo...

  12. I wholeheartedly agree with every comment about kinders! They are a lot of work, but they are so sweet and fun. <3 I'm glad you had a good day!

  13. Where else can one work where they have little 'employers' who tell you each day how BEAUTIFUL! you look, how WONDERFUL! you are, HUG YOU! and CAN'T WAIT to see you the next day and to find out what is planned?! It's a workout but I LOVE teaching K! Thank you for sharing what it is like in the K World!

  14. Kindergarten Teachers are a special group!! I love my job and wouldn't trade it at all!


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