Teaching Kindergarten: Create a Learning Atmosphere
Basic Principles for Kindergarten Teachers
Here you will learn about the nature of working in kindergarten and find some useful techniques for teaching kindergarten:
1) Real development of the child is possible only through self-activity. It arises out of one’s own interests and is sustained by one’s own power. It gives, joy, freedom, contentment and peace and enables the child to reveal his personality and attain self-realization. Self-activity is promoted through songs, movements and construction.
2) It is through play activities that the child discloses his real self and clearly indicates his future life and interests. With the help of play, various qualities like social feeling, co-operation, tolerance, freedom, self-independence, character and intellect are developed. Provide opportunities for imaginary play and make props and dress-up clothing available.
3) Self activity can be developed only in an atmosphere of freedom. Freedom will bring out the natural and rational development of the natural and inner faculties of the child. It is a controlled freedom where the child keeps in view the freedom of others.
4) There is natural tendency in the child to take part in social life. Real education can take place in the company of others because the life of an individual is an integral part of the society. Hence from the very beginning, children should be trained to lead a group life and to live well in the society for developing different aspects of personality.
5) For kindergarten teaching, songs are a most important part of each day. Almost all the songs are about common objects of life. Songs will help them remember the concepts about which they are singing. They are the best means to make the child familiar with his surroundings (space awareness) and to exercise his senses, limbs and muscles. Use music to change the tempo of the room. Play soft quiet songs for rest time. Play lively songs to encourage active movement.
6) Use manipulatives as often as possible in math, science and other areas. It keeps all of the students engaged in the activity. Manipulative use helps the tactile learner.
7) Try to address all styles of learning when you are teaching a concept: tactile, visual and auditory. For example, you may be introducing the letter A. Say it multiple times, show it in many ways and have children feel it by using salt or sand trays, play dough, whipped cream or other sensory devices.
Provide a colorful and welcoming atmosphere. Be ready with a smile to greet each student in a special way. Display student-made artwork and projects. Divide the classroom into areas of play, whole group instruction, student-sized tables and chairs, art corner and orderly storage. Each table should have a container in the center with shared supplies such as crayons, pencils, safe-scissors and school glue.
Have a tape/CD player easily accessible for playing music. If most of your daily items are within easy access, you will have better control of student behavior. Provide an alphabet, calendar, 100 number chart and theme bulletin board all easily visible to the children. Have a book area displaying favorite books and those which enhance your current theme.
When teaching kindergarten here is your goal: you are prepared, you have planned lessons, your necessary materials are ready and you have a joyful demeanor! You will find that kindergarten teaching is very rewarding.