The School Day

  • The Falmouth Public Schools has adopted an intentional curriculum design for kindergarten. For children who have attended one of our elementary preschool programs, there is a continuation of what students have already learned through reinforced language and instruction focused on cognitive, social-emotional, self-regulatory, and foundational academic skill development.

    The curriculum teaches children how to focus their attention, use flexibility in thinking, and enhances working memory skills.  Most activities during the course of a school day are strategically planned to help children with these self-regulation skills.  Some examples are:

    • Literacy Learning Centers
    • Math Centers
    • Dramatization based on the whole-class readings

    To learn more about Tools of the Mind, go to www.toolsofthemind.org.

    To learn more about Journeys, go to https://www.hmhco.com/programs/journeys.

What Your Child Will Learn

  • In addition to the social and emotional skills your child will develop during the year, here is a short overview of the Kindergarten Curriculum Standards that will be addressed:

    English/Language Arts & Literacy

    Reading Literature

    • Ask and answer questions about key details in a text
    • Retell familiar stories
    • Identify characters, setting, and major events in a story

    Reading Informational Text

    • Describe the relationship between illustrations and the text in which they appear
    • Identify basic similarities in and differences between two texts on the same topic

    Foundational Skills

    • Demonstrate understanding of the organization and basic features of print
    • Recognize and name all upper- and lowercase letters of the alphabet
    • Demonstrate understanding of spoken words, syllables, and sounds (phonemes)
    • Know and apply grade-level phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words
    • Read emergent-reader texts with purpose and understanding

    Writing

    • Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to compose opinion pieces as well as informative/explanatory texts;  write poetry and narrative texts

    Language

    • Demonstrate command of English grammar, capitalization, punctuation, spelling, and usage when writing or speaking

    Mathematics

    Counting and Cardinality

    • Know number names and the counting sequence
    • Count to tell the number of objects
    • Compare numbers

    Operations and Algebraic Thinking

    • Understanding addition as putting together and adding to as well as understand subtraction as taking apart and taking from

    Measurement and Data

    • Describe and compare measurable attributes
    • Classify objects and count the number of objects in each category
    • Work with money

    Geometry

    • Identify and describe shapes (squares, circles, triangles, rectangles)
    • Analyze, compare, create, and compose shapes 

    Science and Technology/Engineering

    • Use investigation and experimentation for problem-solving in science-related topics

    History and Social Sciences

    • Have a growing understanding of family, community, and other cultures

How You Can Help Your Child

  • The following checklist, although not exhaustive, can help to guide you as you prepare your child for school. It’s best to look at the items as goals toward which to aim. They should be accomplished, as much as possible, through everyday routines or enjoyable activities that you’ve planned with your child. If your child needs more time to develop in some areas, don’t worry. Remember that children grow at different rates.

    Good Health and Physical Well-Being

    • Eats a balanced diet
    • Gets plenty of rest
    • Uses the bathroom properly
    • Washes own hands
    • Has had all the necessary immunizations
    • Runs, jumps, plays outdoors and does other activities that help develop their large muscles and provides exercise
    • Works puzzles, colors, paints, and does other activities that help develop their small muscles

    Social and Emotional Preparation

    • Is learning to explore and try new things
    • Is learning to work well alone and do many self-help tasks for self
    • Has many opportunities to be with other children and to cooperate/share
    • Is curious and motivated to learn
    • Is learning to finish tasks
    • Is learning to use self-control
    • Follows simple directions
    • Helps with family chores

    Language and General Knowledge

    • Has many opportunities to talk and listen
    • Is read to/Reads every day
    • Has access to books and other reading materials
    • Has technology use monitored by an adult
    • Is encouraged to ask questions
    • Is encouraged to solve problems
    • Has opportunities to notice similarities and differences
    • Is learning to write own name
    • Is learning to count and play counting games
    • Is learning to identify and name shapes and colors
    • Has opportunities to draw, listen to, and make music, and to dance

    Adapted from a US Dept. of Education publication http://www.ed.gov/parents/earlychild/ready/preschool/preschool.pdf

Books to Read with Your Child

  • Reading with your child is integral to their literacy development and to foster an appreciation of reading.  When selecting texts to read with children, consider selecting texts that have won awards for the text and illustrations.  Some accolades given to distinguished children’s literature include The Newbery Medal, The Caldecott Medal, The ALA Notable Books, The Sibert Medal, The Geisel Award, and The Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction.

    In addition, consider exposing your child to a variety of literary genres.  Below are suggested titles of texts based on varying genres: 

    Poetry

    Author Title
    Florian, Douglas Bow Wow Meow Meow:  It’s Rhyming Cats and Dogs
    Rylant, Cynthia Boris
    Schwartz, Amy Old MacDonald
    Sierra, Judy There’s a Zoo in Room 22

    Fiction

    Author Title
    Agee, Jon Mr. Putney’s Quacking Dog
    Brett, Jan Armadillo Rodeo
    Brown, Anthony The Shape Game
    Crews, Nina The Neighborhood Mother Goose
    Lionni, Leo A Busy Year
    Polacco, Patricia Babushka’s Mother Goose

    Folktales

    Author Title
    Bryan, Ashley Beautiful Blackbird
    Marshall, James The Frog Prince
    Young, Ed The Lost Horse: A Chinese Folktale
    Zemach, Margot and Harve Just Enough and Not Too Much

    Folklore

    Author Title
    Bang, Molly The Paper Crane
    Brown, Marcia Once a Mouse…
    Cooney, Barbara Miss Rumphius
    dePaola, Tomie Days of the Blackbird
    Shulevitz, Uri The Treasure

    Informational:  Science

    Author Title
    Arnosky, Jim I See Animals Hiding
    Bishop, Nic Chameleon, Chameleon
    Cobb, Vicki I Fall Down
    Williamson, Sarah Fun With My 5 Senses
    Gibbons, Gail Exploring the Deep, Dark Sea

    Informational:  History

    Author Title
    Aliki A Medieval Feast
    Gibbons, Gail Cowboys and Cowgirls:  Yippee-Yay!
    Nelson, Kadir Henry’s Freedom Box
    Spier, Peter The Star-Spangled Banner