- whole group lesson
- small group lesson (at your teacher table)
- group stations (or centers)
Whole Group Lesson Ideas
Once those two things are completed and it’s time to start our whole group lesson. I spend anywhere from 20-30 minutes a day teaching whole group. This can change depending on the topic and how familiar with it they are.
What do we do during this time?
I keep it simple. When making out lesson plans I don’t try to plan an anchor chart and then a journal activity and a game all at one time. Choose one thing that you know you can do during that time span.
Here are some examples of what you can do:
I’m obsessed with task cards. I use them for EVERYTHING! Whole group, small group, stations, math journals, you name it! Here is what all you can do with them.
1. Play iSpy – tape the cards around the room. Have students go from card to card and solve.
2. Scoot – place a card on each students desk. When the teacher says scoot, they move to the next desk and solve.
3. Find someone who – for fun, tape a card to each students back. Have them go around finding partners and solving the cards on each others back!
4. Journals – print pages 2-4 to a page and use them as journal prompts. See how to do this here.
Math Station Set Up
Once we finish our whole group lesson we do a quick brain break. I mainly use GoNoodle. You can sign up for a free account and they have lots of videos geared towards academic content. Since we are just finishing our math lesson, I normally will choose as math video at this time.
How do I set my stations up?
I have 5 different groups of students who are paired up by ability level. This is what my rotation chart looks like. I use a clothespin to move up and down to indicate which group is going where.
How many stations should I have?
In past years I’ve had anywhere from 5-6 total stations. This year I currently have 5.
- Station 1 – always math facts (I alternate addition and subtraction)
- Station 2 – previously taught skill
- Station 3 – previously taught skill
- Technology – iPads, computers, or QR codes
- Meet with the Teacher – at the teacher table
What activities should I include?
- hands on learning: use those math manipulatives!
- interactive journal activities
- group or partner work
- abcya.com : Free for grades k-5th. Very kid friendly.
- mathgames.com: Aligned with the CCS (other states can use too, I’m in Texas). Questions are test formatted. Free for grades PK-8th grade. Teacher creates student accounts to monitor.
- www.kahnacademy.org: Very similar to the site above. Teachers create student accounts and can monitor progress. You can select questions based on the standard. Free for use.
- mathlearningcenter.org: This site has lots of free tools for online manipulates as well as apps for tablets. Click on open web app under the activity you would like to use.
- QR codes: Sometimes I’ll use these for my technology station and other times, I’ll include them in my other three. Download a QR code app onto any smart device. Students solve the problem and scan the code to check their answer.
- whole group lesson extension
- journal activities
- task cards
- high order thinking questions
I spend 15 minutes with each group and break it up into three parts.
- Warm up activity: 3 minutes (previously taught skill)
- Guided practice: 9 minutes (current skill)
- Reflection/Writing: 3 minutes
- What was added to your knowledge
- Tell something that stretched your thinking.
- Do you think what we just did is still hard? Why?
- Do you think what we just did is getting easier? Why?
- What will you change next time?
Keeping Up With It All
How do I keep track of what I’m doing with each group? This is where my guided math binder comes in. This thing saves my sanity. It holds all my lesson plans, data, notes, and planning pages.