A New Look and Calendar Time

For those of you who have been here before, you might notice that I changed my blog background again. I promise, I am not going to be changing it on a regular basis, but this design is much more of what I wanted - and I did it all by myself! There's a few more tweaks to be made, but overall I like the effect :)

Anyways, on to calendar time! This summer I was told that a proper calendar has all of the dates on the calendar already displayed. The reasoning behind that is apparently because "kids will never see an incomplete calendar in real life". Now, personally, I like having an incomplete calendar. I think it enables kiddos to see that each day adds to the calendar. I have students come up to put up the next date and I make them choose from several different cards to see if they can figure out which number comes next in the sequence and identify that number.

I wasn't quoted any studies about this, so I'm not sure if research actually shows that having an incomplete calendar impedes learning or a complete classroom calendar promotes learning. So, I thought I would take the question to bloggy world and see what everyone else is doing/thinking. I am open to change, I just need some more opinions on this. One of the people who told me this was also the one telling me that I needed to teach positional words and geometric shapes at the same time - i.e. "The sphere is on top of the rectangular cube" rather than "The ball is on the table." I can't see how that approach is any better than teaching the skills separately, and I frankly think it would be confusing to a lot of my students. Eventually I'm sure we could integrate the skills, but to teach that way from day one just seems artificial to me and I can't see a benefit. So, two questions then:

When you put up a new month on your calendar do you put up all the dates or do you leave it blank and add a day at a time? Why?

Do you teach positional words and geometric shapes at the same time/same lesson or do you introduce each concept separately? Why?

BTW, here is my calendar, I love, love, love it! It was bought with Title I money and I was so thrilled to get it!
Calendar Math Activity Program

5 Rustle Up A Response!:

Cindy Solomon said... Reply to comment

First of all, LOVE the new look. As for my calendar, I put up all the days as well as any holidays that month. I also have acetate pieces with shapes of different colors which I can place over the date each day to create a pattern throughout the month. It helps to see where we are on the calendar as well as teach patterns.

Sherry said... Reply to comment

If you use the calendar that you have posted (pictured) then you can have all the days set out (say in blue) and turn them around as each day happens. You are then meeting the original criteria that you had set out, PLUS you are modeling that days pass in a particular order. I use the calendar that you have posted and I have never had a difficulty with this concept....now getting them to understand that the next day after Tuesday, MAY 31 is Wednesday, June 1 and that it exactly follows and does not officially start at the top (except that there are not enough spaces on this calendar to extend into the next row, that's a challenge!

Meredith said... Reply to comment

I do not have all the days up on the calendar at the start of the month. We add the date each day. We are teaching SO many more skills with them beyond "what a real calendar looks like" and I like to have them tell me what number comes next and what tomorrow's date will be even though it is not up on the calendar yet because these are important kindergarten skills. I do put all of the holiday cards in the calendar at the beginning of the month though, so we can count how many days until those special days. I think you should do whatever you want with your calendar and how you teach shapes/position words. Personally, I do not teach 2 skills at once. I have so many ELL students that it would just be too much vocabulary to throw at them all at once. Now, later in the year, once they had better mastery of the terms, then maybe I would use shapes/positional words together though.
~Meredith
Keen on Kindergarten

Anonymous said... Reply to comment

I use a posterboard calendar that I create each month with the dates and fun things to look forward to listen on the appropriate dates, i.e. field trips, birthdays, etc. I also have bought several sets of daily calendar "markers" from the teacher store, which the children put on the calendar each day to form a pattern. It's the best of both worlds. The calendar is complete, but the children still get the experience of putting the calendar together.

Sheri said... Reply to comment

I put up a number each day. That way they have to tell me what number comes next and what the pattern is, etc. I am sure that kindergarteners will see a full calendar eventually. All of my children were taught this way and it was fine. Perhaps we should add a real calendar next to the calendar area...

Oh, and I like the new background!

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