Sunday, March 9, 2014

Bright Idea Blog Hop

I'm super excited to share my bright idea as part of Bright Idea Blog Hop!  

I wanted to share how I organized my math workshop in our third grade classroom. As a first year teacher, I began very overwhelmed as to how to differentiate my math lessons each day to meet my above grade level learners and any in between and below. It was clear that I had a very large span of abilities, and I wanted to find a way to advance all of my learners as mathematicians. With the guidance of some fabulous team members at my school, I implemented math workshop in my classroom! 

When I first implemented math workshop, I introduced math rotations just like I introduced Daily 5 to my students. We made T charts, and we built our stamina for a couple weeks before we fully began math rotations. Here is one of our student/teach T charts. 

We went through each rotation, and I explicitly modeled the inappropriate and appropriate behaviors. Just like Daily 5, I wanted my students to know what their expectations looked and sounded like to avoid any confusion. 

My layout for math workshop lends itself well to the curriculum our district uses because I take roughly about 2 days on a new lesson. Here is how math workshop works in our classroom.  

Day 1 of the new lesson

Number Sense Warm Up: 5 minutes 
Mini lesson with some Guided Practice: 20 minutes
Math Rotations: 60 minutes
On the first day of the lesson, the students go through rotations 1, 2, and 3. 

Day 2 of the lesson

Number Sense Warm Up: 5 minutes 
Open ended Mathematics Discussion based on concept taught the previous day: 40 min
Math Rotations: 40 minutes
Exit Slip: 5 minutes 
On the second day of the lesson, the students go through rotations 4 and 5.

Now onto the fun stuff! Here are my 5 different math rotations.

Sorry this is a bad picture and only shows 4 rotations, but it does give the feel!

1. Tech Time: Students go on Reflex Math and practice either their subtraction, addition, or multiplication facts. This program does cost money, but I am so grateful to have been chosen to use this through our math specialist. However, if your school does not have this program, I have also used xtra math and scootpad. 

2. Math by Myself: Students work on independent practice on their own. 

3. Math Games: Students work with partner playing a math game that practices their math facts. Right now, I have my students rotating through fraction games, but they also always can choose from addition battle, subtraction battle, round it, and multiplication battle! 
Learn more about these math games over at Serenade to Second Grade! The kids absolutely love this rotation! 

4. Writing about Math: Students work independently on a math word problem. They are required to glue the word problem in their journal, solve it with an equation, solve it with a picture, and use words to justify and explain their thinking. 

5. Math Review Boxes: Students get to choose from review bags that cycle common core skills throughout the year. This month, our math bags are circus themed! Check them out here! The kids love this rotation because they get to use manipulatives and task cards, and I can really see the difference between my students' engagement in these review bags over review worksheets.  

**During rotations, I am pulling flexible small groups reteaching and teaching new concepts based on data from our standardized tests! 

The kids seem are very engaged and on task during math workshop, and this new format of teaching math has really made teaching math much more enjoyable for myself and my kiddos! 

I hope this gives you a glimpse into our 90 minute math workshop! 


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