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    By Chrissie

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    For our journals, I read a story related to the monthly theme. I then ask a comprehension question, opinion, etc. (all related to NYS standards) and the children must give a response. WE write the response for them.

    For example, after we read the Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly, they were asked: What could you have done to help save the old lady? They drew a picture and had to use problem solving skills to come up with a response. We wrote thier response. Some said give her water, others said medicine. Some said very random things! We then share the ideas with the class with a review circle.

    The teacher upstairs uses journals in a different way in her UPK program. As soon as the children arrive, she has them "write" in their journals - one day is practicing their name; another day the letter of the week. Some days it is free writing. Pretty much anything where the children are "writing" is considered journaling in my district.

    So you are right! They do not come in knowing how to write and what not.... at least not in my program! Our goal is to provide them time to write and think at their own level of development.

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