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Classroom Schedule, Transitions, and Academic Play Essay

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Updated: Aug 31st, 2020

h`e classroom schedule is present and contains all the activities for the day. The intended audience of the schedule are parents and caregivers, and the language of the schedule is appropriate. For example, all of the activities, such as finger-play and outside play are named in a casual manner that would not cause any confusion and require further clarification. The schedule is located close to the classroom door, which makes it visible and accessible to parents, educators, and children. Furthermore, the schedule is rather detailed and includes all activities and transitions throughout the session. Overall, the classroom schedule fulfills all the requirements and provides parents with the necessary information.

Transitions are an essential part of every classroom schedule. However, they are also very challenging to plan and carry out efficiently (Vitiello, Booren, Downer, & Willford, 2012). In the present schedule, transitions occupy around 35 minutes of the session, which is sufficient to ensure a smooth transition between activities. Transitions included handwashing, cleaning up, and bathroom reminders, which are typical activities for transitions (Vitiello et al., 2012). These types of transition help children to maintain good hygiene and behavior, while at the same time allowing them to discuss the previous activity with peers.

+++++74hroughout the transitions, children exhibited positive behavior and returned to the classroom in time for the next scheduled activity. Only two children got distracted during a transition in the morning session, which was due to a minor argument. The teachers helped to resolve the argument, which helped to minimize the delay and prevent the distraction of other children in the group. In the afternoon session, no distractions were noted, which proves that children were able to maintain focus throughout the transition. Overall, transitions were effective and appropriate for the chosen age group. However, some improvements could be made to increase student engagement during the transitions. For instance, setting behavioral expectations contributes to focus and positive behavior (Vitiello et al., 2012). Thus, if the transition involves cleaning up, the teacher must clarify which objects are to be put away and what should the classroom look like by the end of the transition.

Academic play is a crucial part of preschool learning. This approach can be defined as something in between free play and direct instruction (Weisberg, Hirsh‐Pasek, & Golinkoff, 2013). By combining beneficial features of both styles, academic play contributes to positive academic outcomes and help children in their transition to further stages of education. The academic play was the main part of both sessions and included group activities such as finger-plays and storytelling. The latter allowed children to practice their skills in the play pretend, which contributed to the fulfillment of preschool standards 0.3 and 1.3 (NJSDE, 2014). Learning centers, on the other hand, contribute to classroom learning by allowing students to pursue their specific interests and work in groups. Both morning and afternoon sessions involved open choice learning centers, which presented students with an exciting opportunity to learn more about their favorite subject. Although children tended to choose one center they liked most, they also paid attention to activities in other centers, which shows that the activities were interesting and appropriate for the developmental stage.

In the development of the Weekly Planner, observations made throughout the sessions were used to indicate periods and activities. For instance, I found that breakfast time was too small for all children to finish their food on time, which is why breakfast time was extended to 30 minutes. Moreover, I also observed that no activities were encouraging the development of fine motor skills, except for the finger-play, which is why I added the fine motor skills content area to the schedule.

ECH-525 Weekly Planner

Time Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Transition 8:00-8:10 Arrival, Health Check & Hand Washing Arrival, Health Check & Hand Washing Arrival, Health Check & Hand Washing Arrival, Health Check & Hand Washing Arrival, Health Check & Hand Washing
Content Area: Art, English, Maths Instructional Activity: Free choice learning center activities Instructional Activity: Painting or Sculpting Instructional Activity: Reading and discussion Instructional Activity: Free choice learning center activities Instructional Activity: Learning numbers and quantities
8:10-8:25 Standard: 1.4 (Art), RL.PK.1-3 (English), 4.1 (Maths) Standard: 1.4 Standard: RL.PK.1-3 Standard: 1.4 (Art), RL.PK.1-3 (Literacy), 4.1 (Maths) Standard: 4.1
Transition 8:25-8:35 Clean Up & Restroom Reminders Clean Up & Restroom Reminders Clean Up & Restroom Reminders Clean Up & Restroom Reminders lean Up & Restroom Reminders
Content Area: Outside Play 8:35-9:15 Instructional Activity: Free Choice Gross Motor Activities Instructional Activity: Free Choice Gross Motor Activities Instructional Activity: Free Choice Gross Motor Activities Instructional Activity: Free Choice Gross Motor Activities Instructional Activity: Free Choice Gross Motor Activities
Standard: 2.4 Standard: 2.4 Standard: 2.4 Standard: 2.4 Standard: 2.4
Transition 9:15-9:45 Handwashing & Family Style Breakfast Handwashing & Family Style Breakfast Handwashing & Family Style Breakfast Handwashing & Family Style Breakfast Handwashing & Family Style Breakfast
Content Area: Performing and Srotytelling 9:45-10:40 Instructional Activity: Storytelling and dramatic play Instructional Activity: Storytelling and dramatic play Instructional Activity: Storytelling and dramatic play Instructional Activity: Storytelling and dramatic play Instructional Activity: Storytelling and dramatic play
Standard: 1.3 Standard: 1.3 Standard: 1.3 Standard: 1.3 Standard: 1.3
Transition 10:40-10:50 Clean Up Clean Up Clean Up Clean Up Clean Up
Content Area: Music and Movement 10:50-11:30 Instructional Activity: Dance Instructional Activity: Singing and Performing Instructional Activity: Dance Instructional Activity: Singing and Performing Instructional Activity: Dance
Standard: 1.1 Standard: 1.2 Standard: 1.1 Standard: 1.2 Standard:1.1
Transition 11:30-11:40 Clean Up and Handwashing Clean Up and Handwashing Clean Up and Handwashing Clean Up and Handwashing Clean Up and Handwashing
Lunch 11:40-12:30 Family Style Lunch Family Style Lunch Family Style Lunch Family Style Lunch Family Style Lunch
Transition 12:30-12:45 Bathroom Reminders and Clean Up Bathroom Reminders and Clean Up Bathroom Reminders and Clean Up Bathroom Reminders and Clean Up Bathroom Reminders and Clean Up
Content Area: Health, Music, Science 12:45-13:30 Instructional Activity: Free choice learning center activities Instructional Activity: Free choice learning center activities Instructional Activity: Health learning center activities Instructional Activity: Free choice learning center activities Instructional Activity: Science learning center activities
Standard: 5.2 (Science), 1.2 (Music), 2.1 (Health) Standard: 5.2 (Science), 1.2 (Music), 2.1 (Health) Standard: 2.1 Standard: 5.2 (Science), 1.2 (Music), 2.1 (Health) Standard: 5.2
Transition 13:30-13:40 Clean Up Clean Up Clean Up Clean Up Clean Up
Content Area: Outside Play 13:40-14:20 Instructional Activity: Guided outside play Instructional Activity: Guided outside play Instructional Activity: Guided outside play Instructional Activity: Guided outside play Instructional Activity: Guided outside play
Standard: 2.4.3 Standard: 2.4.3 Standard: 2.4.3 Standard: 2.4.3 Standard: 2.4.3
Transition 14:20-14:50 Handwashing & Afternoon Snack Handwashing & Afternoon Snack Handwashing & Afternoon Snack Handwashing & Afternoon Snack Handwashing & Afternoon Snack
Content Area: Motor skills 14:50-15:20 Instructional Activity: Fine motor activities Instructional Activity: Fine motor activities Instructional Activity: Fine motor activities Instructional Activity: Fine motor activities Instructional Activity: Fine motor activities
Standard: 2.4.2 Standard: 2.4.2 Standard: 2.4.2 Standard: 2.4.2 Standard: 2.4.2
Transition 15:20-15:30 Clean Up and Departures Clean Up and Departures Clean Up and Departures Clean Up and Departures Clean Up and Departures

References

New Jersey State Department of Education (NJSDE). (2014).. Web.

Vitiello, V. E., Booren, L. M., Downer, J. T., & Williford, A. P. (2012). Variation in children’s classroom engagement throughout a day in preschool: Relations to classroom and child factors. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 27(2), 210-220.

Weisberg, D. S., Hirsh‐Pasek, K., & Golinkoff, R. M. (2013). Guided play: Where curricular goals meet a playful pedagogy. Mind, Brain, and Education, 7(2), 104-112.

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