What is a name wall? A name wall is similar to a word wall but only the names in the classroom are posted. This a great way to display your word wall for the beginning of the school year. On pages 25-29 in your free Friendship theme unit you will find the letters that can be used as headings for your name and later word wall. The activities outlined below can be used in conjunction with using the name wall.
More name activities can be found on pages 21-24 in the Friendship theme.
HOW TO USE THE NAME WALL
1. Students place their name under the correct alphabet letter. This can be used as a quick introduction to the alphabet.
2. I placed the letters of their names in a chart format as seen in the photograph above so the number of letters within the names can be easily counted. The students can also visually see who has the longest and shortest names in the classroom. These can also be cut and used for a center activity where the children can make each other’s names using a model (photograph on the right). A picture on the name card allows the students to connect the name to a face.
3. The number of students under each alphabet letter can be counted to see what letter has the most and least amount of students.
4. The names can be used for phonemic awareness activities (say each phoneme within the name very slowly and the class must guess what name you are saying).
5. Break the names down into syllables by clapping them.
PRINTING THEIR NAMES – FREE FONT TO USE
I had a significant amount of students who arrived in my classroom unable to print their name. The few that could, printed it in all upper-case letters. By the end of September, I expected them to be able to print their name using an upper-case at the beginning and the rest in lower-case. Each morning when they arrived, they practiced printing their name and I also sent a practice sheet home. The sheet on the right displays a copy of the sheet I used. I had the sheet laminated and they used erasable markers to practice with. They practiced on the dotted lines and the bottom half was for practicing without the dots. Students with weak fine-motor control have difficulty with the dotted printing format so the bottom half allows them to be more successful.
I have purchased fonts to use for dotted printing but the one below is free and I felt is even better than the paid version.
HOW ARE STUDENTS AND TEACHERS COPING WITH COMMON CORE STANDARDS?
I have finished revising all the themes (except for Colors or Colours and Valentines) to align with the Common Core standards. This was a huge undertaking as curriculums vary significantly. I tried to make each theme flexible and varied in difficulty to meet the demand of these different curriculums.
In Canada the Kindergarten curriculum is still play-based with focus on developing early literacy and numeracy. The new “Common Core” curriculum in the U.S. aligns more with what I am teaching in grade one (in Canada). I can’t help but wonder how the little ones are coping with this demand??? I would certainly appreciate any feedback on this (below)………
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