At the end of the year, my kindergarten class (fully remote) participated in an ABC Countdown until the last day of school. Letter Rr day was Reading Day, so we completed our literacy event on Rr day, May 28th. Throughout the day, we had opportunities for families to discuss literacy, Mystery Readers, and take-home packages of summer literacy supplies to foster literacy development before first grade.
We began the day by sharing our favorite books that we have at home or that we have read at school. Families were invited to discuss favorite books with their child in advance to prepare the students for speaking. Several students chose Rainbow Fish as their favorite text, which was our first in-depth literacy analysis that we did in September. Other students chose non-fiction texts, particularly the book about frogs, while the majority of the class chose books with their favorite characters. Discussing favorite texts allows children to engage in literacy discussions, back-up their viewpoints, and develop conversational skills.
Next, two teachers from the school joined our class as Mystery Readers. Our MTSS teacher came in a disguise with a hat, glasses, and a face mask and students got to guess who she was after she read. The MTSS teacher even gave me a copy of the book she read to remember our special year of school. Our music teacher also read to the class, and encouraged families to listen to music and sing songs together to develop literacy skills such as fluency and rhyme identification.
At the end of the day, I shared with students that we have a special summer package ready for them to pick up. The package contains writing supplies such as gel pens, pencils, and crayons to use with blank books as well as a Summer Writing Journal. I invited students to write in their summer journal and return it to school in the fall for me to read and add comments. The children seemed very excited! Their literacy packages also included differentiated texts tailored to each individual student. Books were printed out from online and include texts at their particular reading level as well as topics interesting to individual students. For example, the student’s package attached in the image included books about flowers and dragonflies, as well as letter and sentence tracing pages. She also received books in Spanish as she is an ELL student. Another student’s package (not pictured) included paragraph comprehension and writing prompts at a more difficult 2nd grade level as well as chapter books with a character of the same race as her.
After sharing the contents of the package, I invited parents on screen for me to explain how to complete the writing and reading activities. I encouraged them to invite their children to write each day. I shared ideas for developing literacy such as modeling reading and writing in front of their children at home, reading a play-dough recipe to create together, completing story dictations together, and taking trips to the library.
I am eager to see the writing that my students create over the summer! Thank you to NWP and Panda Express for providing the opportunity for my students to continue their literacy development, and for helping me become a better teacher and lifelong writer!