Three years ago St. Anne's implemented a new reading program in Kindergarten called "The Superkids". The children love it because of the interesting, relatable characters and the fun activities. The teachers love it because it is spot-on in providing a strong phonetic base while meeting the needs of readers at different levels. It is a phenomenal program, as is, all on its own.
At St. Anne's however, we continually strive to make learning meaningful for children, and the Superkids program is no exception. Take Oswald, for instance. He introduces the letter O and the short vowel sound /o/. He likes to learn about animals, especially odd animals like the ostrich, the octopus, and the otter. He also designs his own fantastical odd animals. To make this idea meaningful, the Kindergartners meet with their fifth grade Connection Buddies to design their own odd animals which we proudly display in our pod area. While they love this fun and collaborative activity, this year we decided to literally bring the learning to life!
It all started when Mr. Davis visited our class to read the book, A House For a Hermit Crab by favorite author Eric Carle. The children thoroughly enjoyed the experience and decided that the hermit crab is, indeed, an odd little animal. Someone said they had a pet hermit crab, and it was not a far stretch to imagine our own odd classroom pet! After reading information books and watching a YouTube expert explain how to set up a proper tank, we got busy! The children were excited and engaged as they learned about salt and freshwater dishes, substrate, and temperature/humidity gauges! Together, we created the perfect habitat for the newest members of our class: Digger and Red!