Emotion Activities for Early Years French Immersion

I wrote a post last month about Social Emotional Learning in the Early Years that started with “It. Is. Everything.” It’s so foundational that I am revisiting this now to share some more resources and ideas I have been using.

Tourbillon d’émotions

Last week we read Tourbillon d’émotions (The Way I Feel) with my students. We practiced the vocabulary and I invited students to share examples of times they have experienced various feelings. We also made faces using items in our individual loose parts bags such as buttons, popsicle sticks, and Q-Tips to show various emotions.

We made emotional faces using various loose parts from our individual loose parts bags.

Later last week we read Thelma la licorne (Thelma the Unicorn) and talked about how the characters felt during different parts of the story.

This year I printed the black & white outline versions of Mme Andrea’s emotion vocabulary cards to create some vocabulary colouring books for students.

What are your favourite emotion activities?

Name Activities for Kindergarten

Our names are important. They are part of our identities and our stories. They are generally one of the first words we learn to say, read, and write.

Mon nom est Tonnerre

Last week I read the book Mon nom est Tonnerre (“Thunder Boy Jr.” in English) with my class. After having a conversation about why our names are important, we each decorated the first letter in our name and put them up on our alphabet wall using this great freebie from Mme Caroline.

Our alphabet wall with decorated letters on Mme Caroline’s templates. I was asked about the bulletin board paper, and it’s Better Than Paper by Teacher Created Resources. This one is the Rustic Wood pattern, and I have the Clouds pattern up on my other boards. I put it up in September 2019 and it has lasted really nicely so far.

Name Activities & Resources

Ripped paper name art

What are your favourite name activities in Kindergarten?

Monthly Self-Portrait Printable in French for 2020-2021

As I wrote in my earlier post about self-portraits, they are one of my favourite things about teaching Kindergarten. I love seeing them throughout the year, and as I learned March-June of this year, it works for remote learning as well as in-person.

Here is a set of monthly printable pages I made for drawing self-portraits dated septembre (September) 2020 through juin (June) 2021.

I like printing them individually to put up on the wall and then into a scrapbook, but I have also seen people print then all at once into a book – whatever works for your class!

This week we did the Mat Man guided drawing from the Handwriting Without Tears and danced to the song Tête, épaules, genoux, orteils. I slowed it down to half-speed in the YouTube settings to make it easier as we’re first practicing.

What self-portrait activities do you enjoy doing with your class?

My Favourite Teach-shirts

I am an avid collector of teach-shirts (or I guess you could call them teaching shirts). Since I have been asked a few times where I order them from, I wanted to put together this post for anyone interested. These are some of my favourites because they are comfy, fun, and provide some good reminders.

Andoveco French Shirts

I love Andrea’s French teacher shirt designs so much that I have three of them on t-shirts:

Dr. Jody Carrington Bring. Your. Brave. Shirt

This shirt is so soft, and better yet it is an important reminder to keep doing things with my whole heart when I can’t predict the outcome. This summer I was lucky enough to win a VIP ticket for Relit 2020 from Laurie McIntosh that included this shirt in a box of goodies. Check out my blog post about Relit here.

Zen Lion Design Coffee, Teach, Sleep, Repeat Shirt

Teaching, coffee, and leopard print are some of my favourite things, so I was thrilled when I came across this cute shirt. I ordered mine as a t-shirt.

PicklesDesignShop Ça va bien aller Shirt

I treated myself to this beauty as a back-to-school gift, and I am looking forward to wearing it.

School Shirts

I have a t-shirt, hoodie, and long sleeve with my school name on it. I like to keep one at school in case I need an extra layer, want to add a bit of school spirit, get juice on my shirt from helping with a fruit cup, etc.

What are your favourite teach-shirts?

First Day of Kindergarten: Handprint Poem Printable

On the first day of Kindergarten, along with getting to know each other, where the bathrooms are, handwashing, safety guidelines, a first day self-portrait and photo, and time to play, I also like to read a story and have students make a handprint keepsake.

In the past I have used Le bisou secret (The Kissing Hand) and made handprints and paper puppets. This year I will be using Bienvenue (All Are Welcome) , and making a class book about what makes us feel welcome and we will be tracing our handprints onto this poem printable I made.

What do you like to do on the first day of Kindergarten?

Relit 2020 Bring Your Brave Sketchnotes & Quotes

On Saturday I had the amazing opportunity to take part in Relit 2020, organized by Dr. Jody Carrington‘s team. I learned so much, and it was such a great way to recharge and get pumped up before officially getting back to work this week. I won a Very VIP ticket, so I want to say thanks again to Laurie McIntosh and Dr. Jody Carrington for everything!

Thanks for the Bring Your Brave Relit 2020 goodies – I absolutely love this shirt!
My setup for the day – thanks for lending me your desk Jesse!

Bring Your Brave by Dr. Jody Carrington

I shared my sketchnotes and some of the quotes that resonated with me on my Twitter (@Madame_I_Am) before sharing them here today.

Sketchnote from the Bring Your Brave session by Dr. Jody Carrington.

Empowering Kids to be Brave by Naomi O’Brien and LaNesha Tabb

Sketchnote on Empowering Kids to be Brave by Naomi O’Brien and LaNesha Tabb.

Walking Kids Through Grief & Loss by Jeremy Allen

Sketchnote on Walking Kids Through Grief & Loss by Jeremy Allen

Brave-Maker Strategies by Dr. Jody Carrington and Laurie McIntosh

Sketchnote on Brave-Maker Strategies by Dr. Jody Carrington and Laurie McIntosh

Surviving the Toughest Year of Your Career by Joe Dombrowski

Sketchnote from Surviving the Toughest Year of Your Career by Joe Dombrowski

Hosted by Jesse Lipscombe

I am so glad that I take part in it, learn from the speakers alongside some new and renewed online educator friends, and I am so looking forward to Stay Lit in January 2021!

What have you been doing to get relit for the upcoming school year?

Exploring Student Interests in the Early Years

Inquiry Mindset & Inquiry Live

Last week I listened to a fantastic Inquiry Live conversation on Instagram between Rebecca (@inquiryteacher) and Laurie (@mrsmacskinders). I had to quickly grab the nearest pen and paper (which happened to be my gratitude journal from Dr. Jody Carrington that I was so fortunate to win along with a ticket to RELIT! 2020) to jot down these notes.

One of the powerful strategies that was mentioned in the Instagram conversation was showcasing learners’ DNA (Dreams, Needs & Abilities) and keeping these in mind as we are planning. Laurie discusses DNA on this great blog post. Rebecca wrote this lovely post on getting to know your learners.

Rebecca & Trevor’s book, Inquiry Mindset, is full of great inspiration and ideas around how to find out and explore students’ curiosities. Some of my favourite ideas included:

  • Celebrations of learning (making museums, galleries, movies, etc.)
  • Using dramatic play to explore interests
  • Having a Wonder Wall to feature questions – here’s an example from my classroom
  • Using picturebooks as provocations

I really encourage you to check out Rebecca’s Instagram page (@inquiryteacher) for a lot of great ideas and inspiration around provocations and more!

More Resources & Ideas

What resources or ideas have you discovered to explore student interests?

Social Emotional Learning in the Early Years

It. Is. Everything.

It’s in our conversations, our classroom setup, our read-alouds, and the activities we do, and it is a key lens to look through as we plan for learning. Here is a sketchnote from a professional development session I attended (virtually) in early May that shows some important examples and ideas of how social emotional learning can happen and be supported:

Sketchnote from a professional development session on social emotional learning in the early years

Emotional Regulation Resources by Dr. Jody Carrington

I highly recommend seeking out any of Dr. Jody Carrington’s fabulous work to learn more about the importance of emotional regulation, and how we can model and support it:

Sketchnote from The Mental Health of Kids These Days workshop by Dr. Jody Carrington.

More Resources

What are your favourite resources, activities, or other ideas for nurturing social emotional learning in the early years?

Bilingual Educators Virtual Summit 2020 Reflection

I love to learn from and connect with new teacher friends, so a few weeks ago I took in some of the sessions from the Bilingual Educators Virtual Summit 2020. Unfortunately that week I ended up with a migraine, and I did not catch nearly as many sessions as I had originally hoped. I was also watching sessions from the Play First Summit which was happening on the same days, and you can find my sketchnotes from those sessions in this blog post.

Encouraging Bilingualism at Home through Family Connection and Book-Inspired Activities

Sketchnote from the session on encouraging bilingualism at home through family connection and book-inspired activities by Laura Fiore of @inspobilingue.

Yoga in Primary French Immersion

Sketchnote from the session on yoga with primary French Immersion students by Mariah of @aplayfulpurpose.

Have you taken advantage of any free online learning lately?

Play First Summit 2020 Sketchnotes

This week I have been watching sessions from the Play First Summit that was organized by Fairy Dust Teaching and Teacher Tom. I enjoyed listening to the sessions, creating sketchnotes and then sharing those out with a community of people from all over the world in the conference Facebook group. People from that global community shared with me that my notes helped them to access and revisit these ideas, which was a really lovely feeling.

Professional Development Session Sketchnotes

Using the Life Experiences of Children in the Classroom with Lynnette Arthur

Sketchnote from the session “Using the Life Experiences of Children in the Classroom” with Lynnette Arthur. Check out her page “Reggio Children Inspired”!
Some key reflection questions from Lynnette Arthur: Where are my biases? What do I hope will happen? What are the steps, obstacles, and resources?

Life-Derived Learning in Challenging Times by John Yiannoudis

Sketchnote from the session “Life-Derived Learning in Challenging Times” by John Yiannoudis.

Original Learning in Early Childhood by Suzanne Axelsson

Sketchnote from the session “Original Learning in Early Childhood” by Suzanne Axelsson.

A New (And Better!) Normal by “Teacher Tom” Hobson

Sketchnote from the session “A New (And Better!) Normal” by ‘Teacher Tom’ Hobson.
“The only legitimate use of power is to empower.” –Teacher Tom

How Come We’re So Afraid For Our Kids? By Lenore Skenazy

Sketchnote from the session “How Come We’re So Afraid For Our Kids?” By Lenore Skenazy.

Stop Stealing Childhood in the Name of Education by Maggie Dent

Sketchnote from the “Stop Stealing Childhood in the Name of Education” session by Maggie Dent.

Play, Freedom, and Trusting Children by Kisha Reid

Sketchnote from the “Play, Freedom, and Trusting Children” session by Kisha Reid.

The Power in Children’s Problem Solving and Independence by Janet Lansbury

Sketchnote about “The Power in Children’s Problem Solving and Independence” session by Janet Lansbury

The Value of Play by Peter Gray, Ph.D.

Sketchnote about “The Value of Play” session by Peter Gray, Ph.D.

Policing is a Play Equity Issue by Ijumaa Jordan

Please follow Ijumaa Jordan on social media and support her work:

Documentation to Share, Connect, and Reflect by Wendy Lee

Sketchnote from “Documentation to Share, Connect, and Reflect” by Wendy Lee

Re-opening Trauma Informed Practice by Dr. Mine Conkbayir

Sketchnote about “Re-opening Trauma Informed Practice” by Dr. Mine Conkbayir

How To Sketchnote

One of the questions I got a few times was about the tools I use to create my sketchnotes. The physical tools I use are my iPad and a Ciscle stylus. Recently I started using the SketchBook app on my iPad, and I have been liking the variety of pens available. When I started creating sketchnotes, I used the Paper app.

I learned to sketchnote mostly by looking at other people’s sketchnotes online. I find it easier, more fun, and more likely to share & review my learning this way. Sylvia Duckworth’s Sketchnote Fever is a good resource if you are interested in learning more.

Sketchnoting is about capturing your ideas and doodles on a topic, so it can be done on paper or digital platforms. So if you are starting your sketchnote journey: write what you hear, draw what you feel, and show the connections as you process them.

Do you sketchnote? Did you watch any of the Play First Summit 2020 sessions?

P.S. I will be taking a break from my regular blog & education-gram posts this week while I spend time with my family. My next post will be Thursday, August 6th and I will share my sketchnotes from the Billingual Educators Virtual Summit.