Vienna Elementary School offers a full-day kindergarten program. Full-day kindergarten allows the teachers and children time to explore topics in depth and in a less-rushed atmosphere. The ratio of transition time (arrival and opening, clean up and departure) to class time is reduced so there is more instructional time. Students are able to participate in activities offered to other primary children, such as music and PE classes with specialists, and lunch.
What is a typical day in kindergarten like?
A kindergarten day must include a balance of large group, small group and center activities, as well as many opportunities for movement, active play, and hands-on investigations. The following sample is one way for organizing a full kindergarten day. The actual plan will vary according to teaching styles, classroom needs, and special programs. Any schedule must be flexible enough to allow for the “teachable moment,” unplanned events, and time of year. For example, Total Group Times may be shorter in September.
Arrival and Newswave; children arrive to classrooms, unpack necessary materials, engage in simple warm up activities, the school news show is broadcasted to classrooms to share VES related news and start the day
Morning Meeting/Circle Time; class engages in activities such as: calendar, weather, greetings, music and movement, plan for the day
Language Arts; shared reading and introduction of reading/writing skills
Individual and small group work; children continue working on language arts skills while working at learning stations independently or in small groups with an adult based on their individual needs
Quiet time; children choose to rest or do a quiet activity (read individually or in pairs, work with playdough, draw/color/write, or listen to story read by staff, often accompanied by calming music
Math Opening - math read aloud, music/movement related to numbers and counting, introduction of new concepts
Individual and small group work; children are participating in learning stations designed to practice new skills and review materials learned throughout the year
Special subjects such as Art with the art teacher, Computer lab, Music with the music specialist, PE with the PE specialist, Guidance lessons with the guidance counselor, Library, and special projects
Closing (Whole Class)
My child still takes a nap. Will there be nap time?
The full day kindergarten schedule includes a “quiet time” for books, reading, and listening to stories, as well as comfortable areas of the classroom for quiet activities. Not all children need a nap, but all children benefit from periods of relaxation to balance their active play. Teachers anticipate that the need for quiet time may be greater in the beginning of the school year as the children become acclimated to school. The transition back to school is hard for children…and teachers!