Thursday, September 13, 2012

Math Workshop Introduction

I have been totally inspired by all of the posts about Math workshops.  I have been very unsatisfied with whole group instruction but struggled to figure out what to do.  The next chapter that I am doing is all about adding and subtracting, either using mental math or regrouping.  You understand. Fairly simple things that do not take a lot of whole group instruction.  (Much better than introducing American money to kids who have never seen or used it!)

Well I have decided to dive right in and try to do a rotation workshop type thing.  I love the way that Elizabeth from Fun in Room 4B has explained her rotations.  I have also been reading over Clutter Free Classrooms's description of her math rotations.  But for now I can not figure out what to do with 4 stations.

So what I am thinking is having 3 groups and 3 stations.  For now that makes the most sense for me.  The three stations will be Math Facts, At desk, and Teacher Time - I just need the H for the MATH. Maybe eventually I can add that on!  My school is really big with math facts so I need to provide time for students to work on that and get used to it.

Here is my plan: Start the lesson with a brief, very very brief overview of what the lesson is about. Explain the main idea so everyone has that.  Then move into the rotations.  Normally, we would check the homework together but since we are just starting the chapter we cant do that.

So far we have maybe taken 10 minutes at the absolute most.  With 30 minutes left that gives us 10 minutes per station.  Starting with my on level students at Math Facts, they will practice their math facts with flash cards with a partner.  I will start with my below level students at Teacher Time to give them any additional help that they might need and more review and examples.  My above level students will start At desk working on the material in the text book for practice.

When we rotate, the on level students will come to Teacher Time and the low level will go to At Desk to practice what they just reviewed.  The above students will move to Math Facts.  Same things will happen.  For the next rotation, above level will come to Teacher Time to check their desk work and see if anything needs reviewed.  On students will go to At Desk to complete the assigned problems and low students will move on to Math Facts.

Whew.  That sounds like a lot of work.  Hopefully my kids can handle this and I can too! Does it sound like it will work?  What advice do you have for a new teacher trying to implement Math rotations/workshops?

HELP! I love reading all these blogs and being so inspired to try something new.

1 comment:

  1. I love the sound of it!

    I began math rotations last year. We have five rotations so my biggest piece of advice is practice, practice, practice. Show them how to rotate.. and then practice it. Fortunately for you, it's a lot easier to monitor 3 rotations than it is 5. :) We spent two weeks at the beginning of the year learning how to rotate and how to play each game at two of the centers. We created anchor charts for the expectations at each rotation.

    Good luck!!! Hopefully this weekend I'll be posting my Guided Math Packet which includes a lot of fact games! :)

    Ashley @ Fierce in Fourth


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