Two years ago I had a “eureka” moment regarding how I had been working with calendar journals. Every day we would go through the routine of singing Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow, find the days, the date, and color the squares each day to reflect our current pattern study (ABC, ABC, AABB, AABB, etc). We would continue with chanting the months, singing the months, singing about the seasons, graphing the weather, and so on. I had noticed each year that half of my group (or more) would have such difficulty finding the day/date. They seemed so lost when looking at the entire grid that is a standard monthly calendar!
It was during one of these “normal” calendar routine mornings that I decided a weekly view might help my kids make more sense of how time passes through the month. By finding Week 1, we could proceed to finding the name of the day, and then trace the date number below it. Every row has the names of days of the week, so real connections could be seen between the day name and its corresponding number below! Rather than having the days posted at the top, then having to move your finger down the column to find where the teacher is talking about, you could find the current week, then look for the day we were on. I made the calendar journals in this format, and tested them with my group in 2011. Guess what? My calendar journal time became a fun activity (teacher included)! A whole new series of conversations about how many weeks in the month, how many days in each week, and how many days in the whole month kept us engaged, and COMPREHENDing calendar!!! I have done this each year since 2011…never looking back! What do you find most effective in your calendar routine???
If you would like to view a sample of this series for the entire year, here is a link to the August 2012 Freebie. This might give you an idea of what I am speaking about, and cause you to rethink calendar. http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Week-at-a-Time-Calendar-Journal-Sample-for-August-2012-274744
The entire 2013-14 Year of Calendar Journals is now available in my TpT Store!