Math Centers-- help & ideas needed

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Beezus, Oct 22, 2008.

  1. Beezus

    Beezus Cohort

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    Oct 22, 2008

    I'd like to move toward using Math Centers so I can do some small groups during Math. I have 1 hour and 28 kids. What will be the best way to implement centers?

    Any suggestions? I feel like I am at my wit's end with this class!
     
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  3. firstgradeteach

    firstgradeteach Comrade

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    Oct 23, 2008

    After we complete the class practice sheet together the students have a seat work page to complete. After they finish they have one math center to complete. I have four groups and four simple centers. One center is a weighing station. I change the items to be weighed every week. (for about 3 weeks) Another is using the math palettes that came with our new Saxon math program. I have a graphing center. The students make their own graph and have to ask the other students in the group to make their choice. Then they have to answer simple questions about the results. This week they are writing domino addition sentences. These are all very simple items that don't take a lot of preparation.

    When the students are finished they peer tutor with their partners with their math facts. If the students pass the facts (3 days correct) they set them on my desk so I can test them. (I usually test these before reading centers the next day.) After they peer tutor they keep practicing math facts either with wrap-ups (another Saxon tool) or reading math picture books.

    I am working with students in small groups this whole time. It works out well- actually probably better than my reading centers!

    I'm not sure if this answers your question but it gives you an idea of what my kids are doing.:confused:
     
  4. Beezus

    Beezus Cohort

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    Oct 25, 2008

    Yes-- that does answer my questions. Thanks for the ideas for the center activities, too.
    What is the time frame you are working with?
    I do have a parent volunteer in my room during this time, so I can have her work with a group also. Here's what I am thinking at the moment:
    15 minute mini-lesson and begin the practice sheet.
    20 minutes: 2 groups at stations and 2 groups with an adult
    20 minutes: the groups flip.

    I have about 10 students who usually need little to no support. I'm thinking about putting all of them in a group, and then my other 3 groups will only have 6 students.

    Does this sound like a reasonable plan that will fly in practice?
    Thanks for any and all input!!
     
  5. firstgradeteach

    firstgradeteach Comrade

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    Oct 25, 2008

    I think that sounds like a great plan! I never have practiced a timed group so I can't have complete input about that side!

    It differs depending on the day but I usually have about 45 minutes of math. (That is all that I can fit in!)

    For myself, my groups have mixed abilities so that they can help each other. I have a more flexible plan that I call back names to meet with me. My groups are based off of pre-assessments that I give. I cut up two weeks worth of practice worksheets to create a pre-test. I grade the pre-tests and determine what skills small group students need to be taught and what skills I need to teach whole group. Some students are in three to four different groups. Some students are only in their money enrichment groups because they knew all of the current target skills.

    If you are teaching the lesson for the day but in small groups your plan sounds like it will work really well! The group of ten can just work on enrichment of that lesson. I would love to do this! I just don't have a volunteer during that time and wouldn't be able to meet with all of the groups every day.

    I hope it works out! You will have to post and let me know how it works out!
     

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