Saturday, November 19, 2011

Welcome to my WORLD!!

Greetings new friends! I am thrilled to be a part of this collaborative blog. My name is Crystal Radke and I am a Kindergarten teacher. I am also the author of the blog Kreative in Kinder. I love my job! I couldn't imagine doing anything else.  I am a Texas born and raised wife and mother of three and I like to think my heart is as big as my home state.

If you were to go back in time and take a peek at my kindergarten classroom when I was a sweet five year old girl (that’s my story at least), it would look much different than today.  If I had a quarter for every time I heard the saying “Kindergarten is the new first grade!” I would be rich! In all seriousness, you won’t see a big open play area, a classroom of 12 students, nap mats or even a half day program in my classroom in Texas anymore.  I could only find this statistic, in 1999 61% of U.S. schools had a full day kindergarten program. I would think there has been a major increase since then. 

In Mrs. Radke's class, we hit the ground running as soon as the classroom door opens, ready to grow and learn, hoping to meet the increasing expectations set for Kindergarten students. Yes, they want them reading...I mean REALLY reading among so much more. I teach in a Title 1 school. My class consists of 22 sweet kindergarten students coming from all walks of life. We don't have class or grade level  teacher's aides but there are a few school instructional aides that provide interventions if necessary for each class, 30 minutes a day, four days a week. Our day starts at 7:30 a.m. and ends promptly at 3:00 p.m. Most of my students fall alseep on the way home for the first few months as they adapt to starting out their educational career of working and learning to achieve expectations set for them that are beyond their understanding. The very least I can do is provide an environment that is filled with imagination, exploration, and fun. Take a peak...

As you can see, you have entered the jungle. It’s such a fun place to be every day. I always tell my students that “This is OUR room”. I want them to take pride in taking care of the place they spend most of their waking hours. I want them to feel at home and loved. As educators, we spend more time with children than their families do so providing an exciting, enriched environment is an important part of their learning experiences. 

Thanks for taking time to visit my room. I look forward to learning and growing with you in the future. Want to know about something specific, leave me a comment. I can’t wait to tell you more about the great things (and struggles too) that take place in my worldmy Kindergarten WORLD!


  1. Nice to meet you, Crystal! The expectations here for kindergarten are rigorous, as well, and I spend my days helping little ones get ready for all the things you kindergarten teachers will need them to be prepared for! I look forward to hearing more about your days in kindergarten! :)

  2. Hi Crystal! Glad to meet you and excited to learn more about your kindergarten world!

  3. what a wonderful, inviting classroom! Can't wait to see more!

  4. Nice to meet you crystal. Two things I love about your room are the huge leaf sheltering the animals & the oil drip tray just like Scott's, or maybe his is like yours.

  5. LUV LUV LUV LUV LUV getting to peak inside of your room. You have me jumping up and down for where you'll take us in the coming months.


  6. Thanks new friends! I am so excited to be here. That huge leaf is covering my library. The kids love going in there to read. I use the paint tray for my magnetic center...another favorite. Have a great week! I am so THANKFUL to be here!

  7. Great to meet you, Crystal! I love your enthusiasm for teaching - just what kindergarten students need! And I love that you have a special library area in your classroom. I'll look forward to getting to know you better! Deb @


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