Hi, Last year was my first year teaching kindergarten. I feel that I could really strengthen my math lessons. I was wondering if you could give me an overview of how you teach math to your kinders. For example, last year, I did a problem of the day and taught a mini lesson. Then the kids worked in their math journal and did a math tub when they finished. While the kids worked on math tubs, I met with small groups to enrich or reinforce skills. What do you do for math?

It sounds like you were doing very developmentally appropriate math lessons for Kindergarten! I teach a lot of my math through the calendar...we do this for about 20 minutes daily! Then we split into two groups (about 8 kids) and I meet with the kids to do a mini lesson and my para meets with the other group and plays a math game with them! My kids also rotated through the math center once a week! I think your math ideas were fabulous! I really like the idea of math tubs!

Thanks for the compliment. I think my math sounds better in writing than it appeared to be. It seemed unstructured and disorganized to me. I'll keep certain aspects of it, but I would love to hear how other teachers structure their math lessons.

I dedicate 20 minutes to calendar as well at the beginning of the day. It helps cover so many standards, and it also provides lots of routines for the kids. Later in the day, I either have a math lesson from the book, or we do centers so I can pull groups. This is usually 20-30 minutes. Our district uses Saxon math, and I follow their lessons for calendar pretty clearly. Here's what it covers: Flip over the Day of the Week tag on a chart. Sing song. Month of the year - sing song What year is it? Patterns/shapes - Our Saxon math kit is set up so that the date pieces on our calendar make different patterns each month. They also use different shapes. Sept. may be an AB (yellow-blue) pattern using triangles, but Dec. may be a ABB (red-green-green) pattern with hexagons. Numbers- after placing the pattern piece under the correct day of the week on the calendar, we figure out what number to write by counting. We talk about number formation. Then we have a 100 number pocket chart. We count how many days we've been in school using the chart, flipping over one card each day. When we get to 100, we start learning to count by 10's, then 5's, then 2's The second half of the year, we start counting coins and estimating during calendar time. For math lessons, we start with sorting activities and work up to graphing. We do a lot of counting and number writing, starting with 1-10 first, then moving to 11-20 (takes the longest to learn), then 21-30. I found a page that helps practice writing numerals 1-20. I photocopied it on cardstock and laminated them. The students use overhead markers to trace and write the numbers. Our math kit includes flashcards of numbers 0-20, one set for each student. I found a way to make them, but it does cost a little. Go to an office supply store and buy the perforated paper to make your own business cards. You can type/write the numbers. It helps if you make sets of various colors, so if they mix the pieces, you can fix it quickly. We put them in order, use them for bingo boards, etc. I hold up a card at random, they have to count out that number of manipulatives. We also made necklaces and bracelets. If we are doing the number 17, we made a necklace with 17 beads. Before I tie it on their necks, I hold the string, and they count the beads for me by sliding them from left to right (directionality, one-to-one correspondence). We use lots of clip art based on our theme. Photocopy one page for each child. Cut large construction paper into strips, and have them make a pattern. They have to label it for us. Our math kit includes teddy bears, pattern blocks, linking cubes, geoboards, a scale, foam 3-d shapes. I use these a lot because they were included free. I have some math puzzles that I purchased. There are some ideas on this website. There are also lots of free printables: http://www.childcareland.com/teach2.html http://www.childcareland.com/teach.html I made some art projects using shapes. For more info, PM me

Thanks for the ideas SueHue! Next year is my first year in kinder, so I'll take all the help I can get!

Any time! By the way, another thing I forgot. We purchased self inking stamps (I can't STAND using ink pads) through www.orientaltrading.com. They are inexpensive. For a center, I fold paper so there is 2 columns (one is much larger than the other) and however many rows we think are appropriate. The students write the number you are working on in the first, narrow column. Then they stamp out that many in the wider column. I recommend doing it with them the first few times in a small group just to get them started, as with anything. They like it. They get one stamp per line. You can have the advanced students make patterns while counting out the stamps - that's really challenging to them. I have them count out the stamps to me at the end. If there are too few, they fix it, if there are too many, they have to X out the extras.

I begin the day with 20-30 minutes of calendar math. This includes an assortment of things. I add on as the year goes. Today, Yesterday, tomorrow, coutting days in the year using paper clips, days in the month using straws, we count by ones,fives,tens. I also add things that go along with the chapter in math. We go over the clock and coins (money poems and songs worked great). Addtion etc. During my actual math time I introduce the lesson as a whole group then split off into 4 groups 1-teacher table to reinforce skills 2-worksheet 3/4-investigate previously learned skills using manipulatives This works well because I spend time practicing how to rotate. When I say clean up the table captain cleans the table no one else is allowed to touch anything on the table. I remind them to have their hands in their lap and backs nice and straight againist the chair. Then I say stand up line up and they walk around the outside of their table and line up behind the table captain with their hands in their pockets and their feet in the square on the floor. Then I say move and they move to the next table. The table captain takes a seat at the head of the table and each person follows taking the next empty seat. And they begin right away. After they have this down it takes less than a minute to rotate.