Monday, October 8, 2012

My Math Block

Hi Peeps!

Today went very well...except by the end of the day, I had four kids out, which brought me down to a very small 10 (so no guided reading groups today! I did individual check-ins instead). Tomorrow we star almost 2 weeks of testing in the morning, so I hope everyone is in, because make-ups are a pain.

I wanted to share how I do my math block, and how it is going we the transition to rotations/centers. First thing I did after I had MAP data was to split my class into three groups (high, average, lower). I have three rotations, with 15-20 minutes at each rotation.

One of their rotations is me, where I teach the lesson from the book (it's supposed to be a whole group lesson, but I was losing kids when I did that, so I thought this would be better and I could target kids easier). I modify the lesson based on the group, which means some get enrichment and more questions with less teacher direction, and some get focused instruction on what they need to pass the test (sad, I know, but this is a very language-based math program (weird I know), and I'm more concerned about their calculation skills than them being able to read all the problems), with more teacher direction.

For example, today we worked with place value and writing standard form, word form and expanded form. I walked by lowest group through it three time, and started out with a number in the hundreds before slowly raising the expectation to ten thousands (which was the expectation for the day). With my middle group, I went through it twice, and we started in the thousands. With my higher group, I went over it once, and they were able to do numbers in the hundred thousands. Yay differentiation! (Big buzzword in my district this year-and keeping kids in the classroom to teach, with them possibly going to different classrooms to get on-level instructions.)

Another rotation pages in their math book, usually practice from the previous lesson (tomorrow they will practice today's lesson). They have some 'must do' pages, and some optional pages that are in a different color.

The last rotation is a hands-on center, usually something I've bought off TPT (FYI, Dana's math centers are amazing!!)

Here is what my rotation board looks like...
Right now I am using the SMART Board as the rotation board, but I hope to make my own eventually. Once in awhile I tell a student to shake the mouse so it comes back up :)

Today it took an hour to get through all three rotations (perfect timing! and my goal :)

After we finish our regular work, I have them get their snacks and we do calendar. While they are eating, we go over the calendar, which is an AMAZING resource that I purchased here. It has a core component that we do and build on everyday, and a daily component that changes. It's common core aligned for 4th and 5th, and it takes 10-20 minutes. I've started having the kids do things, and eventually, they'll be responsible for the whole calendar.

I hope this helps you if you are thinking of switching to a Math workshop model. I recommend it, I and feel like my kids are doing better in Math (we've only been doing it for two weeks, but I feel like I've seen a small improvement). I just decided to jump in one day, and I'm glad I did!

Friday's Outfit (a day off!)
Sweater: Maurices
T-Shirt: Target
Tank & Skirt: Old Navy
Shoes: Burlington Coat Factory

Today's Outfit (a little cooler!):
Sweater & Pants: JC Penny
Tank: Old Navy
Boots: Endless

Smiles and Sunshine,

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