Guest Blogger- Herding Kats in Kindergarten

I am thrilled to be guest blogging for Hadar today! My name is Jennifer and my blog is Herding Kats in Kindergarten!

I have to say, I'm a big fan of Hadar - I even have one of her sweet teacher signs hanging in my classroom :

So when I thought about blogging for her, my mind went blank! What in the world would I say?! My only thought was that it had to be Back-to-School related because, let's face it, that's what's on everyone's minds right about now! So, what do I do at the beginning of the school year?

Well I taught 1st grade this year. And it was a LONG year. So kindergarten seems like it was a lifetime ago. Ack, more panic! I don't remember what I used to do! Okay, slow down, deep breaths. Let's take a look at the Common Core for some ideas. Hmm RF.K.2 Recognize and produce rhyming words.

Ohhhh. Rhyming! Yes, I remember now! Hours and hours of rhyming activities, especially for my little ELL guys who find it so difficult to pick up! We rhyme all the time in my class - most of my kiddos come to me without pre-k so rhyming is a totally new skill, even for my native English speakers.

One of my favorite rhyming songs is Make a Rhyme from Jack Hartmann's  Hip Hop Alphabop 2 cd. Click the link to have a free listen! My kids love to do the movements. I love that the open version on the cd allows me to put in my own words!

But, one of my favorite ways to put rhymes into our day is to sing little songs and chants. These are ones I've picked up from all over the place over my years of teaching. I incorporate these into our transitions - or whenever we have an extra 5 minutes (the cafeteria line backs up, the Music teacher is late picking them up, my planned lesson ends unexpectedly early etc.)

Sometimes I will write them on our big chart, and we will practice circling the rhyming words and looking to see why they rhyme. That's a big moment for my kiddos - to realize that you can see the rhyme as well as hear it! I wish I had some pictures of the charts to show you, but somehow those escaped my camera!

Instead, I have a little freebie in which I've compiled 15 of my little rhyming songs. Veteran teachers probably know most if not all of these, but what I find is that sometimes I get into a rut of using the same couple over and over. As we all know, after a while songs go "stale" and lose their effectiveness. If I print these out, laminate them and put them on a ring near my teaching chair, it's a visual cue to use the other songs - and a quick reminder in case I forget the words to any of them!

 There are two versions - one with brightly colored backgrounds and one with zebra print! 
Click either picture to go download them for free in my TPT store!

I hope you can find a use for these little songs in your classroom! Thanks again to Hadar for allowing me to come talk to you all today! Please stop by my blog and say hello!

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  1. I love singing little songs with my little kids. I don't do it enough and your little freebie will help me remember. I have several of Hadar's little ditties posted around my room so I won't forget the words. I am always worried about that.

    Songs are great for rhyming and for learning skills too. Some of my favorites are Name on Your Paper, First Thing by Dr. Jean, the monthly songs by Kathleen Pedersen, and the same My Hands that you posted. It will be fun to have them on a little ring (then the kiddos can read them too). I was having trouble downloading your freebie. I'm not sure why. I will try again in a little bit.

    Terri Izatt

  2. Sorry about commenting twice...I figured out how to make the download work. Now I love it even more! Thank you, Thank you for sharing!

    Terri Izatt

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