If you come into Kindergarten in the morning, you may see some extra friends we have in our room. Tabby Cat and Tom Cat (2 stuffed cats) tell us how to be a good student and get along with others. These social stories are read by the teacher and acted out by student actors and actresses using the stuffed animals. Through these stories, the students learn how to be respectful to one another and school property, be a good sport, praise others, problem solve, follow directions, take turns, identify our feelings and several other social skills. Every other day, Levi the Lion joins us to learn life skills. Levi teaches us the importance of learning to tie our shoes, pushing in our chairs, cleaning up after ourselves, washing our hands, zipping our coats, putting the tops on markers, covering our mouths when we cough, and several other life skills. By acting out and discussing each story, the students are transferring these skills to their everyday lives, especially in school. You can hear students working out how to take turns in a math game by “Tabby Cat and Tom Catting it out”. (This was a student created word). These stories help our students be independent learners and members of our school by taking ownership of their positive choices and actions. I love seeing them go from asking for help continuous at the beginning of the year to independent problem solving after a few months.