Teaching in High Heels

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Guest Blogger..Ms. Thomas

Hey everyone!
This is Ms. Thomas coming to ya from The First Grade Jungle!! I am so excited to be guest blogging for the lovely Gladys!

I have been thinking about posting about this certain topic for a while now, and figured why not send it this way!
So I know most of y'all have read Math Workstations by the fabulous Debbie Diller. (She is my idol) I started really using them this year! I love them, and really we call them math tubs in my class. After we finish calendar math, they can head to their first math tub. This is what my chart looks like:

It actually is a Debbie Diller product. Check out reallygoodstuff.com
The students are in pairs, and then the numbers tell them which basket to get.
Each basket has a number, and specific activity or game inside. I change these up frequently. I usually will have at least five baskets with a game centered around the specific skill we are going over. I keep the others with a review skill in them. Right now we have: addition, fact families, and odd & even numbers. Just to keep my babies on their toes!
Once they pick up their basket, they go find that assigned number on the floor. I wrote out the numbers on name tags and just stuck them on the floor. This was a management thing to make sure they would not sit too close to another group.

Money center

Fact family review
I use mostly games or activities I find on TPT or ones I make myself. I also have a few file folder games I bought a couple years ago at a school store. 

Now what am I doing during all this? I am meeting with a group! I found it was too crazy for me to get all separated into groups since kids move so quickly in and out of levels in math. I decided instead that I would meet with one partner pair and then we would do their assigned math tub at that time. It works! It allows me time to make sure they know how to perform the math tub activity, and to check for understanding. If we finish early then I can take this time to build on the skill and push them farther, or review. 
This is my math group binder!
This is my schedule for what partner pairs to meet with.
I use these cards to make anecdotal notes for my students. I can then look at these later to see which ones are doing well and who needs an extra push.
Above is an example of a group that met with me and we finished early. I gave them clocks and then practiced putting time on an analog clock from a digital clock. {They love getting to write on the table! Dry erase marker!}

So this is how my math tub and small group time all goes down! I hope this helps organize that math time! I know for most of us reading is easy, but math makes us scratch our heads for the best way to get that small group time!

I enjoyed blogging over here today!  Come and check me out!
-Ms. Thomas :)

Thanks, Ms. Thomas...I love your math time!
Thank you for the great ideas!



  • At March 20, 2012 at 10:25 AM , Blogger loularkin said...

    Great post. I am working on math stations over my break. How often do you change your partners?

  • At March 20, 2012 at 2:56 PM , Blogger applesandabcs said...

    The binder looks so organized!!! I have never written on the table with dry erase markers.. good idea!


    Apples and ABC's

  • At March 20, 2012 at 8:02 PM , Blogger Mrs. Morse by Day said...

    I used to have my children write on the table top and then I came up with a brilliant idea! I went to Lowes and bought a white board and had my husband cut it to the exact shape of my bean table. (You can do it with any table!) I used Velcro to attach it. Very inexpensive and great classroom investment. Wipe on, wipe off. :)


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