Popping in Kindergarten

By KellyAnn Bonnell, MA

It’s always a challenge to incorporate pop culture in meaningful ways in the Kindergarten and First Grade Classroom. The shows young kids identify with can lead to a whole host of behavior problems that can be eliminated by not introducing the characters in the classroom.

However, if used correctly, pop culture can become a powerful reward for kinder and first grade students.

I try to do this during phonics since we are able to access Youtube to play videos on the smart board. My typical morning playlist includes:

The Mission Impossible Countdown Clock – To gather them to the carpet

Head Shoulders Knees and Toes -Then I like to get them moving a little

Then we roll into Phonics

Right now I’m using the Jumping ABC Song to help them find steady beat.

From there we move into the Sight Word Rap

And on to a little Jack Harmann for the Letter of the Week

Now none of this is particularly pop culture related unless you count the idea of helping kids use Youtube for nonfiction explorations.

However if the kids remain on task and engaged they can earn one of the following:

Vowel Bat – vowel sound practice

Super Hero Phonics Song – this one is a little weak so check it out first

Batman Read Aloud – this is a batman story

Then we move into the regular lesson plans.

Using pop culture as a reward for being on task is a powerful incentive. It is something children look forward to and work toward and is a healthier option than a treasure box.

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