For the last few months I've been researching phonics programmes and looking at ways of fitting a programme into the existing curriculum.
Phonics is very important as it teaches children how letters they learn as the "ABC" are used. You could call it the building bricks of the written language.
The programme I've selected builds very gradually. In Cherry the children will learn to recognise and remember instrumental, body and voice sounds which will be a lot of fun! Then in Lilly, the children will start to learn the sounds of the letters in games and activities. Gradually they will build up to learning short mixed sets of sounds. As new sounds are introduced, so more short words can be read.
Children in Bamboo will learn more short sets of sounds, so they will be able to decode more and more short words. For Bamboo, the programme will be supported by the monthly book which will be a phonics reader.
Eventually, they should be able to read very short phrases like "a dog and a cat". Of course, children develop at different rates, so some will be slightly behind and some will be slightly ahead.
The phonics programme is designed so that it blends into the Saturday School phonics programme guaranteeing a smooth progression.




 田上幼稚園の英語教育は、昭和51年の創立の時から、英語教育に力を入れてきました。「21世紀の日本を担う世界で羽ばたく子どもたち」をテーマに3千人を越える卒園生が巣立っていきました。卒園生の中には、テーマのごとく、世界の中で活躍している人達が多くいます。
30年の田上幼稚園の英語教育を通して、もっと国際人としての英語を習得するには、胎児から6歳までのバイリンガル教育が最も効果的であるという結論をえ、平成16年から幼稚園教育を英語で活動するクラスを編成し、保育園の認可も得て、0歳から6歳までのイマージョン教育を導入して、6歳までに日本語と英語がを聞き分ける子どもを育成しています。

 田上幼稚園の園児として、平成16年に2歳から始めたクラスの子どもたちが、今年の3月に卒園します。その結果が2月16日のお遊戯会で、英語劇で「オズの魔法使い」の英語劇を発表します。

サタデースクールの活用
第一期生は、4月からは小学生となります。今まで計画してきた。「サタデースクール」が本格的に活動することになります。サタデースクールは土曜日の午前9時から午後5時まで英語で小学校の科目を英語で行います。算数、社会、理科、音楽体操など、全ての科目を英語で授業を行います。これからが本格的な英語を使った教育になります。文部科学省のモデル事業として活動、報告もしてきました。16日(土)のお遊戯会にはどうぞ見学にお出で下さい。



Here are the picture books for February.
"What do you want?" (Longman, Mice series two) for Cherry class. This should help the children with the upcoming pretend shopping activity.
"Is it Winter now?" (Longman, Mice series four) for Lilly class. Lilly class with this book move onto the most difficult of the Mice Series. A good book for practicing the season names and winter vocabularly as well as the phrase "Let's____".
"The Storm" (Oxford Reading tree, stage four) for Bamboo. The last book in this series. We use this book as a sight reader but it will be very useful when the children start to read independently.

All the children take these books home with them at the end of the month.



Here's Greg-sensei and Lilly class in action, rehearsing their play for Performance Day (おゆうぎ会). Greg-sensei has been helping the children with their pronunciation and also helping the children to act (he informs me that in his school days he was a young stage talent).
The name of the play is top-secret to keep it a surprise for the big day.

Today Lee-sensei, led an SI activity in Bamboo class. On Monday Sobia-sensei will lead an SI activity in Cherry and Greg will do the same in Lilly.
SI is based on a multiple intelligences theory. This theory basically says that intelligence is made up of lots of different sub-intelligences. The lessons involve very limited input from the teacher, who is more like a facilitator and supports the children with lot's of praise.
The activities are quite like puzzles and the children always seem to enjoy the challenge.

This week we had mixed-year activities. Bamboo, Lilly and Cherry are mixed together and divided into four groups. Each group does an activity with a English teacher. This week, Augusto took the Monkey group for making paper medallions, Anwar took the Dog group for making wind-spinners, Lee took the Cow group for ball games and Sobia took the Lion group for making paper frogs. Of course, all the activities are done in English.
Next week I'll give an outline here of the themes for October.
今週はなかよしあそびがありました。バンブークラスとリリークラスとチェリークラスは合同となって4グループに分かれました。それぞれのグループが英語の先生と活動するのですが、今週はアウグスト先生はさるグループを担当して紙のメダル作り、アンワール先生は犬グループでかざぐるま作り、リー先生は牛グループでボール遊び、そしてソビア先生はライオングループで紙のカエル作りをしました。もちろん全ての活動は英語でされます。来週は10月のテーマをお知らせします。

The children have been really applying themselves to practicing for Sports Day this week.
Bamboo, Lilly and Cherry have done origami work (moon and rabbits) in their art books and also learnt about the night sky.
Today was also the monthly Birthday Party. After the party in the hall Bamboo, Lilly and Cherry children went back to their classes and the birthday children and their mothers were interviewed by their classmates and teachers. The questions were asked in English.
Bamboo and Lilly also did work on their monthly sight-reader books.
The teachers are beginning to make ghoulish plans for the whole kindergarten Halloween Party!
運動会を前にどのクラスもかけっこや、おゆうぎのおけいこががんばっています。
バンブークラス、リリークラス、チェリークラス共に制作帳では折り紙で月とうさぎを作ったり、夜空に関する英語を学んだりしました。
今日は9月の誕生会でした。体育館でのパーティあと、バンブー、りりー、チェリークラスの子ども達は各教室に戻り誕生会の子ども達とお母さん達はクラスの友達と先生にインタービューをされました。質問は英語でされます。バンブーとりりーは今月の絵本をしました。
先生たちはハロウィーンパーティのためのコワ〜イ計画を立て始めています。

September's themes in the immersion programme. 9月のテマ

Family members, especially grandparents。家族 (all classes).
Post Office terms。郵便局の単語 (Bamboo only).
Where I went over the summer。夏休みに行った所 (Lilly and Bamboo).
Areas/rooms in a house 家の部屋 (all classes).
Characteristics of the night sky and moon 夜の空と月(in Cherry and Lilly).

Alphabet or phonics work in all classes

September's monthly English sight reading books - 9月号の絵本.
Bamboo: Oxford Reading Tree (stage 4) "Come in"
Lilly: Longman's Mice series 2 "Back to School" .

September's songs 9月の季節の曲: "Row, row, row your boat", "Butterfly" and "Watermelon".

This term sees the introduction of seasonal songs in English. These songs will enable the children to practice the language they are learning more often. The songs also have movements which are relevant to the words. This helps the children to remember as the word become an action, as well as a sound. The songs are either well known songs or are adapted versions of well-known songs.
今学期は季節の歌を英語で紹介しようと思います。紹介する歌には習った単語やこれから習う単語がたくさんでできます。指遊びやおゆうぎも、歌詞にあったものを考えました。歌を歌いながらすると単語も動作も覚えやすくなると思いますよ。皆もよく知っている曲やメロディーはそのままで歌詞だけ歌いやすくかえたものもあります。

In the summer term this year (2007) we have started doing P.E in English. This is being applied progressively to all the classes in the Immersion Programme.

This is Bamboo class doing work on the gym horse.


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