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100th Day Edition

By Allie Magnuson on February 4, 2011
  • Grades: PreK–K

Well, it's been almost 100 crazy, brainy days of school already! In this special 100th Day edition of my blog, find out how we get excited about learning, enter a contest to win prizes, and find out what guest bloggers Emily Patterson and Kathleen Thomas have to say about teaching a second language in the classroom.



Curious George

How fast the time has gone by. My students look at the world with wide eyes and are naturally curious, but they have become even more so after I encouraged them to be like Curious George, always investigating and asking a lot of questions.

Curious Little Monkeys 01Curious Little Monkeys 02Curious Little Monkeys 03

Interested Students I have used their personal interests and obsessions to engage them in school subjects, which has enhanced their zest for learning and greatly increased their motivation and achievement.

100 Days Smarter
Most of all, my students love to see themselves on the blog. They have followed me on this adventure with much excitement and enthusiasm. We learn from each other, and I am thankful for being able to share this amazing experience with 31 (yes, I have one more!) beautiful kindergartners. We are 100 days smarter! 

My Class Stock Certificate

I have taken out a share of stock in each child's education.

Spanish-English Fun 01A great way to get kids interested in learning is to engage them fully. Below, guest authors Emily Patterson and Kathleen Thomas share why teaching a second language — or supplementing second language learning with a theme — has numerous benefits. Since all but two of my students speak Spanish at home, the second language in my classroom is English. I combine English and Spanish for many of my activities.

  Spanish-English Fun 02 Spanish-English Fun 03 

by Emily Patterson and Kathleen Thomas

Second Language Barriers

It goes without saying that a good education is one of the best ways to prepare a child for the future. This preparation begins on day one, before they even start school. In this diverse and competitive environment, it is necessary for our children to have a great deal of knowledge and a unique set of skills.

The Bilingual Future

Our diverse, global society is more than a trend: it is here to stay. Nowhere is this more true than in the United States. Being multilingual in today's world not only means a competitive advantage, but it also helps to give one an intercultural appreciation and sensitivity.

Getting Ready

Traditionally a second language is taught starting in middle school, or even high school in some cases. However, research has shown that this teaching can and should begin between the ages of 2 and 5. This can begin at home, or at childcare. Some childcare facilities have adopted it into their curriculum. Studies have clearly demonstrated that the optimal period in a child's life for multilingual education is during the preschool years — at exactly the same time they are learning their first language.

Dr. Fred Genessee, professor of psychology at McGill University in Montreal, believes it's actually just as easy for young children to learn two or three languages as it is for them to learn one.

Beginning the Process

While it is obviously possible to learn a second or third language later in life, it is more difficult. Studies have shown that it is easier for children to learn at a young age because this is when their brain is most flexible. When they are older, they must work through an established first language system and learn the new grammar rules of a second language. When they are young, they learn through mimicking.

The best way for a child to learn a second language is by actually speaking it in a total immersion environment. This way they can observe and mimic what they see with those who speak the language fluently. They can also become involved in their culture, which helps in their learning process.

So as a teacher or parent, get involved. For instance, have a cultural night with the music and food of the culture whose language they're learning. The cognitive benefits are outstanding. Those who were taught a second language at an early age had higher overall performances in basic skills such as problem solving, creativity, spatial relations, and communication when they entered elementary school. Studies also show that multilingual people use more of their brain than those who are monolingual.

Emily and Kathleen are communications coordinators for the network of Atlanta childcare facilities belonging to the AdvancED® accredited family of Primrose childcare schools. Primrose Schools are located in 16 states throughout the U.S. and are dedicated to delivering progressive, early childhood Balanced Learning® curriculum throughout their preschools.

Thanks, Emily and Kathleen, for sharing your knowledge with us! To learn more, read about how many schools in North Carolina are offering dual immersion programs.

 100th Day Giveaway

Miss Bindergarten 100th Day One lucky reader will win five brand-new books for submitting a comment with the correct number of times Miss Bindergarten has appeared in my posts. Count carefully: she shows up in some unusual places! (Hint: Don't include the pictures of her eyes, ears, etc., from the Chrysanthemum post.) Good luck!





100th Day Wish List

  • Please leave comments! If you don't have time to leave a comment, let me know when you like a post by clicking on the "Like" button at the top of the page. I always appreciate the support.
  • Refer other readers. Tell your friends, or link to me from your Web site, blog, or Facebook page.


100th Day Activities

For more on the 100th Day of School, see "100 Ways to Celebrate the 100th Day of School With the Times," from the New York Times, "Pre-K Projects for the 100th Day of School" from Bright Hub, and my colleague Nancy Jang's post, "Celebrating the 100th Day of School," here on Classroom Solutions.  

The Hundred Languages

by Loris Malaguzzi, translated by Lella Gandin

No way. The hundred is there.

The child
is made of one hundred.
The child has
a hundred languages
a hundred hands
a hundred thoughts
a hundred ways of thinking
of playing, of speaking.

A hundred always a hundred
ways of listening
of marveling, of loving
a hundred joys
for singing and understanding
a hundred worlds
to discover
a hundred worlds
to invent
a hundred worlds
to dream.

The child has
a hundred languages
(and a hundred hundred hundred more)

To read the rest of the poem, visit The Innovative Teacher Project.

Have a 100% wonderful weekend!


Comments (10)

Hi Renee - I agree - we take everything we have and give to our children. Thanks for reading. ~Allie

I love the taking stock certificate. We really do take stock in their future.

Hi Ashley ~ Wow! Thanks for reading and re-reading and counting. I am glad you enjoy my blogs. I see you have one too and I will check yours out too. Please come back soon to see if you are the big winner. ~Allie

Hi Cami ~ my you were busy! I will let you know if you won very soon. Come back to check. And thanks for counting. ~Allie

Hi Diane ~ Thanks for reading and counting. I will let you know soon if you are the big winner. Come back again. ~Allie

Hi Cami ~ 100 days is a big deal for kindergartners. You can imagine how excited they get. We made 100 day posters with 100 sequins. Quite a messy project but lots of fun. Thanks for reading. ~Allie

Ok, I went through all your old blogs... I counted 34 Miss Bindergarten appearances! Whew... You have been busy blogging this year! :) That was good to go back through them, because I missed a few along the way. Thanks for sharing all of your amazing ideas!


I counted 32 Miss Bindergartens! Keep up the good work!

Alrighty! I've counted al the Miss Bindergartens! I counted 39....but, that includes 1- 1/2 picture of her at reading groups, 1- 1/2 picture of her in the background in her christmas dress, 2 of her in the background behind easy bake oven, and 1-drawn picture on the glyphs page. Also, there were 3 books/pages with Miss Bindergarten on them. Hope I didn't miss any! Do I win?!?!

Well, Allie, you can probably guess how I'm going to be spending my Friday night...counting Miss Bindergarten sightings! Do you have any more fun 100 day activities planned for your students?

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