Friday, July 25, 2014

Setting up for Success~Math Stations

Hi, Friends! How are ya!

Have your summer days been flying by at the speed of light, like mine?! I mean…really….next Friday’s post will be written on the first Friday in August! YIKES!!!! It’s time to get busy! Sooooo, in the spirit of all things prep and get ready, I’m linking up with my pal Kacey from Doodlebugs Teaching for Five for Friday. No better way to get back in the swing of things!


With preparing for the new year in mind, I thought I’d share with you the tentative plan for implementing guided math. Did I just say that? Small groups…IN MATH?! Big changes are coming, but the more I think about it, the more excited I’m getting! I think its gonna benefit my firsties and help us both to grow as better mathematicians as we fully walk through new changes to our state standards.

Remember those freebies I posted not too long ago?

Well, this is how they’ll be put into play in a few short weeks….3 to be exact. I have to be back at work in 3 weeks!!! Did I say that already?


Math journals and interactive notebooks will be housed in the top two bins. On each label are reminders of behavior expectations that we’ll implement together. Math journals will be used daily as an independent learning choice for math writing. Interactive notebooks will be used in small group and to complete whole group review, as needed. 

You can read a quick blurb by clicking HERE that gives a little further explanation. You can also grab the labels if you like ‘em in that post too! I printed the math journal and interactive notebook labels at 80% in order for them to fit the size of my bins. The remaining slides were printed at 100%.

Bins 1-4 will house independent “Math with Someone” {work station} activities. Two will be review. Two will be games or station activities on our current unit of study. Students will check into Math Daily 3 in the same way that we check in for Literacy Daily 5. 

We’ll talk about that a little more in a sec….


Inside each bin, students will have everything they need to complete the activity. The metal bins will hold small game pieces, crayons or pencils….whatever the activity requires to be completed. Under each bin, will be an ‘I Can….’ statement that outlines the standard students are practicing (in kid friendly terms), then….the activity itself. The number on each bin will designate the area of the room, students will take the bin to work…

Here’s  a closer look….


How will we manage all of this…..? Each day, just as we do in Daily 5 for literacy….students will use the interactive whiteboard to choose where they will work for each of 3 rounds. We will begin our math workshop by completing a mini-lesson, check in for small group….and repeat twice.

Mini-Lesson 1: Introduce, model and think aloud for the concept of the day. I do…students observe and follow along.
Mini-Lesson 2:  A short continuation of the 1st lesson, with students participating.
Mini-Lesson 3:  Students will practice the concept on their own or with a partner.

Following this pattern daily will allow for a gradual release of responsibility and will make sure our lesson length coincides with current brain research. In the Second Edition of The Daily 5, the two sisters indicate current research  suggests…..The average number of years our children are in age parallels the average number of minutes they are capable  of maintaining their attention on direct instruction.


So my friends, we’ve got to make every minute count and fast!


Up next on the list….can you guess what I’m wrapping up? Stay tuned….if you’re not following on FB yet, you may want to! There will be some give-away fun going on as soon as I put a bow on this baby! Then, on to morning work for September….after all, in just 3 short weeks, it’ll be time to put it all in place for a brand new batch of firsties! It’s gonna be a great year!

Like the Math Daily 3 Check-In? Click the pic to grab it! It is saved as an image because I don’t have access to Mimio software at home. To put it to use in the classroom, copy and paste the picture to your interactive whiteboard software program, add text boxes for student numbers (over the gray squares) and save for use. Students will choose the area of math they will work in for each round by moving their number to a box under the designated area. If they are moving to small group, their number will be moved to the "teacher table". There are 4 rounds saved in this file because one of my co-workers is planning for 4 rounds and requested an additional slide. My firsties and I will only be doing 3 each day. The last slide is blank without graphics for you to edit to your taste of graphics and fonts. I will also be adding an interactive timer to the bottom right corner, once I have access to my school laptop.

Enjoy these last few weeks of freedom!
Freebie Fridays


  1. I love the idea of math stations! I am planning to do this, too! I love the execution you are using. The labels are so cute and everything is so organized. Precious!

    - Abbey from Tremendous First Grade Tales

  2. Love the Math Daily 3 check in! I do math stations and this would make it so much easier to manage! Thanks so much for sharing.

    Luv My Kiinders

  3. Love the Daily 3 check-in!! Would you consider making it more editable? Or adding 2 more sections for extra kiddos in each of the 3 stations?

  4. Thank you so much! I had to make a few edits to make it work for me because I teach third grade and needed five stations. I absolutely love your board and cannot wait to use it. Thanks again!!!


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