Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Following Directions Center Part 2

I am finally getting around to posting a continuation of my 'following directions center' post.  A special THANK YOU to my friend Mindi who explained how to embed the documents into my blog (I could NOT figure it out).  She helped me even though I'm not a Mac person...greater love hath no friend! :)

Some of you had emailed me and asked how soon I start using the "Following Directions Center" in my classroom.  I actually start this as soon as I start centers.

For the first three weeks of school, I "model" centers.  The first day, we learn how to use the materials in the pattern blocks center, and then we practice using them (you all understand, that getting just that much accomplished on the first day of kindergarten is miraculous saying a lot).  The next day, I will introduce another center, and split the class into two groups (they all stay at their tables).  One group has the first center introduced at their tables, and the second group has the new center introduced at their tables.  We work for a few minutes, and then switch activities.  Here are my students working on the second day of this process---we are using pattern blocks and puzzles (VERY basic).

I basically keep this up for two or three weeks (depending on the group of kiddos) before starting centers 'full tilt'.  This is when I begin to incorporate the following directions center.  Remember, I have a lot of centers going at one time once we officially 'start' centers.  See my out of control rather active center board below

For the "Following Directions Center":
I start with very simple directions, and very simple stencils for the kiddos to trace and cut out.  I might start with a toothbrush (easy stencils for them to trace), or an apple, a stem, and a leaf.  Again, it depends on my kiddos.   Here is an example of the toothbrush (and a sample of the finished product).

Toothbrush Directions

I also use the digital camera to take pictures of individual steps, especially if there are lots of steps.  A good example of this is the "Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Tree" that we make in October.

Chicka Chicka Tree Directions


  1. Do you make all of your following directions centers yourself or do you get them from somewhere? I really like these and would love to be able to do these with my kiddos!


  2. Jenny,
    I make all of mine---they usually take a little while to put together, but its worth it. As I get access to more of my things at school I will be posting more... :)


  3. Liesl
    I love your center organizational approach and I am a first year kindergarten teacher and I really want to introduce centers this year. I was just wondering if you could explain a couple of your centers that I would love more info on? Or do you happen to have a printable that I could borrow as well? I would love to know more about the "writing B book", the "colours book", and the "coconut book". Thanks so much for your help.