Thursday, January 11, 2018

DIY: Managing Math Centers & Small-Group Instruction

With this small-group math framework (above), students are placed into math groups by the teacher and rotate through stations at the same time with students that have similar learning needs. Each group meets with the teacher each day, and the teacher differentiates based on learning needs.

*This framework inspired by Laureen Reynolds Creating Classroom Centers online class:

With this small-group math framework(above),  students are placed into random math groups. Since they work independently on most items, they don't need to be placed in homogeneous groups. They also work at their own pace. The center choices are differentiated as some students may be doing addition/subtraction number bonds while others are doing multiplication/division ones.

The teacher pulls flexible groups based on data while the rest of the class works through their designated stations for the day. The students' station choices change each day, and on Fridays, they either work on unfinished station work or they have free choice from any of the items on the board.

If starting with 16 centers adds stress to your day, start with less and build up to 16. ThatQuiz, FrontRow, and SumDog are free sites. My school pays for Study Island. Be sure to model each center before expecting students to work independently at them. 

I use both of these frameworks in my classroom. I may use the first one for a couple of weeks. Then, I use the 2nd one for a few weeks. Whatever framework you choose, be sure students have computation practice, problem-solving practice, and a chance to review previously taught items each day in your math lesson.

It's easier to pull flexible groups based on data in the 2nd example because you simply call students to your table based on learning needs. You may pull some students from the green group, some from the blue, and some from the orange for subtraction practice. They stay with you as long as they need to, so they may not get a chance to work through their stations. That's okay -- we're looking for mastery. The extra time spent with you may give them the time needed for mastery. 

Number Bonds
Free Downloads of self-checking multiplication/division and addition/subtraction at PD sessions. :)

Math Talk:  What math problems could be written for the pictures shown below? (FYI -- The young man throwing the oars out of the boat was the last one to fall out. You'll see his feet in the 2nd photo. He's also my oldest son, JT.)

The young man in the top hammock is my youngest son, Kyle. My boys sure didn't get their adventurous spirit from their momma. :) 

Making 10s Card Game Directions:  Remember to remove the face cards and 10s if you're using cards. You can also split the deck in half. You'll end up with two of each card instead of 4. 

This works if you remove all the 10s and face cards so students are always covering two cards that equal 10. You can also split the deck in half leaving 2 of each card. It still works! Model Drawing Directions

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