Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Setting Up Guided Math

Happy Tuesday!

I had an email from a very sweet teacher asking about how to start guided math.  I thought that I would post about it for all to see!  :)

This is a SMALL part of what resembles a novel that I wrote for a teacher in my district.  :)  I honestly have a hanging file that is busting open organized into files folders regarding each topic. 

How to Start Guided Math
You could go out and buy items from Lakeshore, make all new items etc.  But who has the money or the time?
1.   I started by going through ALL of my math workbooks, hands- on math items, games etc.
a.  I made post it notes labeled with the different math skill topics that we cover.  I designated a desk or desks for each topic so that I could lay everything all out!
b.  I started by going through my worksheets and workbooks.
                                        i.    Even if I had to make a copy of the pages, I separated each worksheet that I had by topic/ skill.
c.  I went through my games that I already had and separated them by topic/ skill.
2.   Next, I bagged up each of the topic/ skill items separately in a large bag.  (This next part I did by taking home one skill/ topic home at a time so that I wasn’t overwhelmed.  You could skip bagging them up if you did this step at the same time as step 1.)
a.  One skill at a time, I’d take it home and then sort it out if it was a 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th quarter or enrichment worksheet or game.
b.  Then, I took just the 1st items and sorted it by if I would want to use it for homework, an item to use in a small group or a math goal item.
c.  I repeated step 2b for the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th quarters and also for enrichment items.

3.   I repeated all of step 2 for the remainder of the skills.
4.   Through sorting all of the items, I determined that I had some areas that I lacked good materials.
a.  I asked my grade level teachers to borrow their math materials so that I could fill in my gaps.  J
b.  I also researched online to find other material.
                                        i.    I re-sorted all of these items using all of the step 1-2 directions.
5.    Now everything should be organized!  J
6.   I made the rotation charts and designated a place in the room for all of the math items to be located.
7.   I started teaching the rotations in a whole group.  (Much like you would teach reading stations whole group at the beginning of the year.)  I always referred to the charts and discussed them as we did the rotations whole group.
8.   I gave the students a pre-assessment and analyzed the results.
9.   I determined a skill that I wanted to teach for the week.  I wrote the names of the students on three post-it notes.  (High, middle, low)
10.               On the first day of putting the skills all together, my skill group was just to take the time with each individual group and explain the rotation charts in detail.
11.                At the beginning of the year, until I can form individual goals for the students, I just gave the students a never ending job for all students to work on.  (Going on a shape hunt etc.)

Goals are determined by skills that students did not do well on even after a week of instruction.  Each Friday I give a post assessment just on the weekly skill.  If most of the students do not understand, I will re-teach next week.  If most of the students understand and just a few students do not, then the skill will become the goal for the students that do not understand.  Goals are differentiated based on students needs.  Some students need many goals so I try to group them with as many alike goals as possible so that it is easier to keep track and make sure materials are prepared.

Friday is my assessment day.  The students are given fact assessments as well as the weekly skill post assessment.  The students also have math art and math game rotations.  As they are working on rotations, I am helping students fill in their goal paper or assessing goals.
Items in the goal tubs are self checking items.  I use worksheets in page protectors with answers on the back, I use Lakeshore self checking puzzles, I use other store bought items that the students can use individually.

I am attaching my old goal sheets (the new goal sheets are much more fancy and at school.)

I will also be attaching my rotation charts.  These hang right below my calendar.  I stick a post-it-note right above them each week depending on who is in the group for the week. 

Have a great Wednesday!



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