Welcome to a wonderful year of learning! I am excited to begin this amazing educational adventure with you and your child! I believe that teaching is a mutual partnership between home and school and that together we will prepare your child to lead a life of meaning and purpose within the classroom and beyond. As your child’s teacher, I will be your guide on an alphabet-driven thematic journey from a-z where we will learn and discover through stories, songs, music, art, math, movement, dramatic play, technology, and the sciences in a community where all members learn together and from one another. We will work in large groups, small groups, and individually each day. Hands-on learning will encourage children to cooperatively explore and problem solve. Choice time will help students develop social skills, decision making abilities, and foster the four-year-old’s natural sense of curiosity and need for independence. The Jr Kinder program is designed to help your child grow physically, socially, emotionally, and cognitively in an atmosphere of trust, respect, and kindness. It is my mission to provide each child with a positive learning experience in an intentionally inviting setting where we will all learn to be the best versions of ourselves!
Your Partner in Learning,
Mrs. Kelly Golich
Language Arts: Children are natural communicators at work and at play. The Jr Kinder program strengthens students’ receptive and expressive skills as readers, writers, speakers, and listeners.
Reading: Students will work toward mastery of letter and sound recognition, identify sight words in pre-decodable and decodable books, enjoy stories from a variety of genres, make predictions, sequence events, retell stories, make connections to self, text, and the world, and identify the elements of story: setting, character, plot, and purpose.
Writing: Students will work on fine motor skills while learning to write upper and lower case D’Nealian letters, work on left to right progression, and use pictures, letters, and brave spelling to record their ideas in journals.
Speaking: Students will participate in weekly show & tell, daily circle time chat, dramatic play activities, and learn numerous songs and rhymes. Students will work on questioning skills, expressive voice, making polite requests, and speaking with clarity.
Listening: Students will participate in phonemic awareness games, actively listen while others speak, and learn to be called on.
Mathematics: Skills will be taught formally and will be incorporated into daily themes. An emphasis will be placed on problem solving and logical thinking. Concepts taught include number identification 1-50, skip counting by fives and tens, place value: ones, tens, hundreds, calendar skills, addition and subtraction, graphs, patterns, probability, estimation, classification, inequalities, shapes, measurement, time, and money.
Social Studies: The social studies curriculum embraces the theme of belonging on individual, community, and global levels. We belong to our family and friends. We belong to our city, state, and country. We belong to the world. Multicultural studies take us on imaginary trips each week, based on letters of the alphabet. Cross-curricular activities: art, literature, writing, technology, cooking, music, and movement will give students a taste of these diverse cultures. In addition, seasonal topics are covered: Thanksgiving, peace, and patriotism.
Science: Special topics are covered based on letter of the week. Students learn to observe the world around them and become problem solvers through the scientific method: questioning, guessing, testing, checking, and concluding. Life science, physical science, and natural science are incorporated into our studies.
Art: Students are encouraged to create using a variety of mediums each day. Art appreciation is taught while we display and critique our own masterpieces.
Specials: Weekly PE, Technology, Spanish, and Performing Arts classes support what we are doing inside the classroom.
A Keith education at the Junior Kindergarten level strives to be both enriching and engaging to our young scholars.
B.A in Elementary Education from University of Illinois
Concentration in Music
Kelly shares over twenty years of teaching experience with students, parents, and colleagues in the Keith community. She joined the Lower School faculty in 2007. A graduate of the University of Illinois-Chicago, she received a B.A. in Elementary Education with a concentration in music and a passion for children’s literature. Her lengthy resume includes past positions in Chicago, South Beloit, and the Rockford area as an early childhood educator: Pre-K3, Pre-K4, Kindergarten, and a classroom teacher: grades 2, 3, 4, and a general music teacher for students in all elementary grades. She currently serves as our lead teacher in the Junior Kindergarten program. When visiting Kelly’s classroom, it becomes apparent that her thematic cross-curricular lessons quickly engage students and their families, and she has earned the title “Most Creative Lower School Faculty Member”. Outside the classroom Kelly has taught piano and has worked with children in the dramatic arts. Kelly, and her husband, have two teenage children who are actively involved in competitive sports, dance, and theatrical communities. When time allows, she enjoys traveling, hiking, and spending time with her family.