When planning lessons and units as a kindergarten teacher, it’s important to ensure you’re covering the most essential skills and topics. However, it’s also crucial to pace your lessons at a developmentally appropriate rate for your students. This free kindergarten pacing guide will be your go-to reference all year long as you plan long term and short term lessons and units.
Cover all of the critical kindergarten skills as well as thematic and seasonal units throughout the year without stressing about missing anything. This pacing guide can work alongside your curriculum to help you pace your lessons and skill progression with ease.
What is a Pacing Guide?
There are so many terms out there that refer to how you pace and plan your lessons. Some teachers refer to these as curriculum maps, curriculum guides, year at a glance documents, or pacing guides.
In short, a pacing guide is a go-to reference for teachers to use when planning short term and long term lessons and units. A pacing guide allows teachers to see the progression of skills easily and clearly. It also includes relevant thematic and seasonal units that fit into your instruction throughout the year.
This free kindergarten pacing guide lists the most essential skills and topics taught in kindergarten throughout the year. You’ll see in the free download how the skills progress from month to month. This ensures that students are always building on their prior knowledge and applying previously taught skills.
Why You Should Use a Pacing Guide
There are many benefits of using this free kindergarten pacing guide to help you plan your instruction. These benefits will help you feel more confident in your teaching and more prepared for the year.
Better understand the skills and units that are important in kindergarten.
Focus solely on what your kindergarteners need to learn and what units are developmentally appropriate for them. This kindergarten pacing guide will give you a great sense of what skills are covered in kindergarten and what the proper progression is. This is super helpful for new kindergarten teachers.
Plan both long term and short term lessons and units.
Planning ahead as a teacher is like a secret superpower. By using a pacing guide, you’ll be able to plan your long and short term lessons and units without the overwhelm. Don’t ever feel like you’re spinning your wheels during your planning period again. This kindergarten pacing guide will take out the guesswork and give you a clear plan to build your lesson plans from.
Ensure you are teaching skills in a sequential order that builds on previous knowledge.
Kindergarten skills continuously build on each other throughout the year, whether it’s reading, phonics, writing, math, or science/social studies. A pacing guide will help you plan your lessons and introduce skills in a way that builds on your students’ previous knowledge.
Plan and prep ahead of time.
This free kindergarten pacing guide will save you so much time as it will allow you to plan and prep ahead of time. No more waiting until the last minute to finalize your lessons plans and get activities ready. You can be prepared weeks and even months in advance.
Prep centers, bundles, and other resources and activities ahead of time to align with your lessons.
If you’re like me, you like to get in the groove once and knock out a ton of prep work. By using this kindergarten pacing guide, you can better plan for your lessons by finding centers, bundles, and other resources to use throughout the year. You can prep them all at once, perhaps over the summer, and be ready to go at any time throughout the year.
Make the most of your teacher planning period.
Remember the days of aimlessly wandering around your classroom during your planning period searching for activities and inspiration for your lesson plans? Those days are officially over! With your go-to reference in hand, AKA, your kindergarten pacing guide, you’ll have a plan and activities prepped ahead of time, so all you need to do is organize them for the week.
How To Use a Pacing Guide With Any Curriculum
Although your school or specific curriculum may have their own pacing guide or way of progressing skills, you can absolutely use this free kindergarten pacing guide in conjunction.
First, look at your school and curriculum’s pacing guide if they have one. Find the commonalities and look for areas in which you may need to adjust the pacing guide to meet the needs of your students and the structure of your curriculum.
It may be helpful to highlight the areas that are the same in one color and highlight the areas that need to be adjusted in another color.
If your school gives you more freedom to use the curriculum in the way you feel is best for your students, use the free kindergarten pacing guide to align your curriculum units, even if that means teaching them out of the order the curriculum suggests.
Remember, curriculums are not one-size-fits all. As the teacher, you know your students best and what progression of skills is right for them. Feel free to adjust the pacing of lessons and the rigor to best serve your students.
This pacing guide is meant to be your go-to reference for planning lessons and units throughout the year. Feel free to adjust the pacing of these lessons and units to meet the needs of your school, your curriculum, and your students.
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