I have the privilege to spend my clinical hours in the library of Mary Lyon. The library resembles any other classroom, except that there are more shelves of books than an ordinary classroom would have. The room is spacious and feels very open. As you walk in, there are five large wooden rectangle tables with sturdy wooden chairs. To the right of the tables and chairs are the bookshelves, computers and the library tadpole/ frog tank. Located in the back of the room are a teacher desk, washroom, “Create” center and carpeted story area.
The children sit at the large wooden rectangle tables. The tables and chairs are nice but are far too large for the kindergarten, and even some first graders. Unfortunately, this is out of the teacher’s control. However, having the students sitting in groups does promote opportunities for children to work together. When the teacher has the students on the carpet to read, it very much supports a feeling of togetherness.
There are many things displayed around the room, like posters, student work, and goals and objectives. Since the library is larger than a normal classroom, there is plenty of space forthings to be organized and in its place.
Every week, the teacher reads a different book to the students. This week, she is reading Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. Before she reads the story, she goes over information like author, illustrator, and basics of treating books with respect, to make sure the students know what to do when searching for their own books.
The teacher and I set up 4 centers that will be changed every 4 weeks. The 4 centers consist of Explore, Investigate, Buddy Reading and Create. This month’s theme is ABCs, so we based each center off a different activity involving ABCs. The Explore center allowed the students to have magnetic letters and a board to create different words. The Investigate center allowed the students to work on the computers. The teacher sets up a specific game in which they have to investigate their ABCs. Buddy Reading allows the students to sit in “Leo’s Library” and read with a partner or buddy. The teacher also has big stuffed animals they can lay on. Lastly, the Create center — which the teacher allowed yours truly to set up! I decided for the first graders, based upon the teacher reading Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, to focus center around creating a coconut tree. I had all the materials ready for them and they were able to spell their name up the coconut tree.
They really enjoyed it and couldn’t wait to take them home to show their parents. Go me!