Monday, August 13, 2012

Back to School Math Centers

I’m so excited to start Math Tubs again in my classroom!!  You can read about how I do math here!  I’m hoping to pretty much follow this set up again this year!!

I'll be starting with some of the activities I posted about in the above post during the first week.  But after the first week I plan to use the activities in my Back to School Math Pack!!  Here is a sneak peak of some of these activities:

Build a Tens Frame
Students will be given an amount on a tens frame, they will add counters to build a ten. This will help students determine the multiple ways to create the number 10. This includes 11 ten frames, counters, and a recording sheet.


Part, Part Whole
Students will determine the other part of a number to create a whole. Three sets of cards, counters, and a recording sheet.  Sorry I don't havea picture of the recording sheet, my printer ran out of ink!!

There is also a Set 3 so you can do this activity for several weeks or allow students to use different sets at the same time.  This helps elimate wondering eyes! :)

Who has more?
Students will compare a math problem and an answer to determine who has more. I included to separate recording sheets, counters, number cards, and a mat.  Again you can use this for two weeks or use both sheets at the same time.  I'm so excited about this activity!! 
I included a few more activities in the pack too but I ran out of ink so I can't print them right now!!  If you are interested in the items listed in this post you can purchase the packet here!  It's on sale today!!

Daily 5 - Starting out the Year

During my second week back at school I started using the Daily 5 with my students.  Of course, I’m sure it was not like the Daily 5 that some of you know but it was how I decided to start it in my classroom.  First I broke my students into five groups.  I tried to separate them by student level and by behavior.

I used The Teacher Wife’s Daily 5 posters on my focus wall.  I printed the 5 student names on a little card and attached a piece of Velcro on the corner of the posters and on the back of the card. 

I start my literacy time with a Phonics lesson.  This will prepare them for their Word Work station of the day.  Next I do two rotations of the Daily 5.  Usually at about 12 minutes each, each time I simply move the name cards over to the right one time.  After the two rotations I do another mini lesson.  This time I focus on comprehension.  Here are a few of the books I read.  I follow this up with two more rotations, a sight word mini lesson, and end with the last rotation. 

I loved this story for teaching the imporance of of never giving up, it's also a nonfiction book.

I loved this story for teaching the imporance of reading again and again!!  It is a MUST HAVE!! 

Images from 

We practice the 3, 2, 1 Strategy.  I wasn’t really familiar with this strategy but it helped my students recall facts from the story and learn to ASK questions. 

For the first several weeks I used Read to Someone as PUZZLES.  This allowed the students to have a little brain break.  When we return from break I plan on this being a computer station for awhile.  I tried this station last year and my students had a hard time reading to each other without just talking to each other.  I feel like they need to be “good” readers to be ready to read to someone else.  For right now I don’t think some of students are ready for this station.   

In Work on Writing my students reviewed the handwriting letters we practiced the day before.  I loved this idea and it really helped my students have better letter formation.   At the end of the third week my students practice some DOL, daily oral language, sentences where they added a capital and a period to each sentence.

I used Work Word to practice several skills sight words and phonics.  We reviewed the alphabet sounds, started learning about short a, practiced searching for short a in poems, and I used one day a week to practice sight words using the pages from my Spin a SightWord pack.  See picture below.  I forgot to take a student picture. 

My students also started read to self and listening to read right away.  For Read to Self, we made poster and discussed what it should look like. 

Since it was at the beginning of the year I mostly chose the books my students were reading.  I put a basket of early first grade books on each group of desks and the students were allowed to choose three books from that basket.  This allowed them to have a choice but I still had control.  During my first three weeks I was able to assess every child using McClass 3D.  So, when we go back they will be reading books on their level. 

Each day I put a new book in the Listen to Reading.  Sometimes they had to listen to that same book two or three times.  I DID NOT start a listening recording sheet yet.  My goal was for them to practice listen to the books and following along.  Some days if they listened to an old literacy series they would listen to more than one book during that station.
My students picked up the activities really quickly and it was working great.  Since I work at a year round school I start three weeks of the new year and then I have a mini three week break!!  I needed this break since I didn’t have much summer.  We go back August 20th.  I’m pretty excited about already introducing several things and hopefully we will be able to get right back on track.