How do you feel today?

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Circle time is often a time when children as well as educators come together and have a joined start for the day. Circle time is much more than a shared moment with the group. Circle time is full of educational aspects as well as the promotion of social development and the group's team spirit. Circle time is a great venue to learn to share your ideas, thoughts, and emotions in a safe environment.

How to prepare circle time?

First of all, prepare a big enough floor space to sit on. It is nice if you have a specific circle time area that you gather on each time. When the circle time area is familiar to children, it is easier for them to concentrate and they know what is ahead when they gather for circle time.

Same, repeated routines are recommendable. For example, start circle time at the same time (for example after breakfast). Have the same starting and ending songs for circle time, but other activities during circle time can vary depending on your current learning theme or season. Also keep track of time, make sure circle time is no more than 20-30 minutes long.

If you have a specific learning theme, attach Circle Time to go together with the theme. For example, if the theme is emotions, read a book connected to emotional skills, sing a song that contains names of emotions, and let each child show from a picture card how they are feeling today! The same circle time activities can be done on many days, especially if the attending children are little. The smaller the children, the more repetition.

'All About Me' Lesson Plan Sample

Visual environment

The visual environment is very important for circle time. It is good if it helps children to focus during circle time and creates a feeling of curiosity. Here are some examples of Circle Time activities and pictures that support the activities. Build your own Circle Time wall with these examples:

  • WHO IS HERE - Have a laminated photo of all the children + educators and see who is present at the kindergarten today and who is staying home/off sick.
  • WHAT IS THE WEATHER - See what the weather is like today outside by using a weather wheel.
  • WEEKLY SCHEDULE - Have a weekly schedule with pictures and explain what is today's activity.
  • EMOTION OF THE DAY - Let the children share their daily feelings with the help of pictures.

Get your own TODAY I FEEL emotion board, continue reading!

Today I feel...

It is a nice way to practice sharing, by telling others how you feel today. You can practice talking about emotions at Circle Time with the help of the Emotion Board. The earlier children learn to talk about their emotions, the better they also learn to manage and understand their own (and others') behavior.

An Emotion board is a good starter for talking and learning about emotions. Emotion boards contains pictures of the most common emotions for children to see and relate to. For children, it is easier to relate to the emotions if they see pictures of children, for example, cute animals with sad face might not open up for children that easily when they are only starting to practice the emotional skills.

Emotional skills are one of the most important skills for children to learn. Naming emotions, recognizing emotions, and talking about the roots + consequences of certain emotions are vitally important for children to understand when forming friendships.

Print and laminate your very own Emotion Board and let every child show their emotion of the day at circle time. You can share the child's daily feelings also to the parents and observe if the emotions are changing during the week.

Happy, sad, silly, and sleepy circle times!