Making 8s can be very tricky for my kinders, so I thought we'd try something new this year and it's WORKING! The first day, I wrote a big eight on their whiteboards. After I demonstrated how to make an 8 and we wrote it in the air several times, I had the children trace my 8s on their individual boards over and over (and over). For the next few days, we did 8s on paper (with my big, fat Mr.Smelly markers which made it a huge treat). Each day, I would have the students turn over their papers and try it on their own (pretending I had no idea that they could actually SEE the 8 through the back of the paper, of course!).
By the fourth day of practicing, most of the children could make an 8 on a blank whiteboard all by themselves! Very impressive considering most years I still have children making deflated 8s or 2 circle 8s midway through the year (and we are only 1/4 of the way through the year).
This activity also doubles as a brain-based activity, especially if you reiterate to the children how important it is for the children to follow the trail of the marker for the entire activity. This forces not only the child's hand to be crossing the mid line, but also his/her eyes as they visually track the trail they create on the 8s.
Here is my 8s freebie for you:
Making 8s can be tricky to do sometimes,
but take your time and you’ll be fine.
Start in the middle, right at the top.
Curve down and around, back up and don’t stop.
Round and round and round you’ll go,
and before you know it, you’ll be a PRO!