Saturday, September 7, 2013

Math Stations

I will write more about Math Workshop and Math Stations as we progress through the year, but I am proud and happy to report that we are already into our official Math Workshop routine. Hooray! Each math lesson begins with our "Math Meeting." During this time, we sing songs about the days of the week, months of the year, money, skip counting, etc. We then look at the calendar and the date, and finally we move into our Number of the Day routine. Number of the Day was a new part of Math Meeting for me beginning last year, and integrating it made a marked difference on growing students' number sense. 

We count the number of school days, and the number of the day is simply that number. So, Friday was our seventh day of school, so the number of the day was 7. Students used white boards to record our activities during the Number of the Day routine on Friday. They recorded the number that's one more, one less, ten more, ten less than the number 7. They also recorded numbers greater and less than seven, figured out whether 7 is even or odd, and worked with me to figure out a number model that equals 7 (3+4, 6+1, etc.). We also recorded tallies for each day and add a coin to our Number of the Day piggie bank and recorded the total amount of money (7 cents, $0.07). I will take a picture of the Number of the Day board soon.

Students during our Math Meeting on Friday.
After these routines, I teach a mini-lesson from our Everyday Math curriculum. We then move into Math Stations, which include four stations: 

Meet with the Teacher
All by Myself
Hands On

Students go to two stations each day, in small groups. This is my chance to differentiate the activities and materials to meet individual student needs. So far, this hasn't happened--we are focused more on learning the routine and reviewing skills at this point--but soon students will be able to make choices of learning activities based on interest and academic readiness.  

Computers, laptops, and iPads will be used at the Technology math station for a variety of math learning activities.
The All by Myself math station will include many different activities and assignments. Pattern blocks are popular at the moment!  
The Meet with the Teacher station was a game (Top-It) on Thursday/Friday, but it will usually be working in the student math journal that is part of the Everyday Math curriculum. I can adjust the pace and activities according to the needs of each group. 
Playing Penny Dice (another math game) was at the Hands On math station on Thursday and Friday. Once games are learned and practiced with an adult, they will be included on a menu of math activities to choose from at the Hands On or All by Myself math stations.

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