Monday, September 15, 2014

MATH in My World

Week 5!!!  Can't even believe it.  I am soooo thrilled with how well my students have picked up rotations in my classroom.  Not only do we do reading rotations (my version of Daily 5), we also do Math rotations (Math Workshop/Guided Math).  Well today I thought I would give you a little peek at how Math looks in my world:)
I have 4 rotations in our Math Workshop this year (3 last year with a smaller class).  I am major crunched for time running 4 groups a day and I'm not gonna lie....usually go "over" in math by 5 - 15.  Having said that....we are still working on smooth transitions which will shave off some time.
We start EVERY morning with Morning Math Meeting.  As soon as morning news is over the students go straight to the carpet with their dry erase boards, markers, and erasers and get right to work.
They are soooo quiet and working so hard during this time!  It is honestly some of the MOST precious and valuable minutes that we share all day.
Here is a sample of one of our meetings.  (ignore the we are solving it I am writing kind of backwards and upside down at  These problems vary day to day depending on what we are working on, maybe something they are struggling with, intro to new topics coming up....we ALWAYS do a multiplication problem.  As soon as we are done with this, they scoot back to their seats so I can introduce their workshop rotations for the day.
This is our rotations board.  Each day I write on my dry erase board what each will be....for example:
Teacher Time - B,B, and B (that stands for books, boards, and brains:)
Math Facts - I Ready ( have to do this everyday)
At Your Seat - varies...sometimes a workbook sheet, task cards...will chat about this more
Hands On - math game, or IPads, or Math Sharks
Teacher Time
This is my small group lesson time at my desk/kidney table.  Here I teach the lesson and then set them free (at my table) to work at their speed, on their dry erase boards, to solve problems and show me they understand what was just taught.  When time is up, before they leave, they show me their understanding (over their hearts) using my Show Me Your Understanding rubric.  If someone is really struggling, they stay with me for the next rotation.

Math Facts
Our county has the Math I Ready program and some schools have the reading one as well.  It's a great computer program for differentiation.  Our kiddos have to be on it every day so that is one of their math workshop rotations.

At Your Seat
As I said, this varies from day to day.  Sometimes it is a page from their workbook or practice from their book on the lesson the day before.  Sometimes it is task cards.  I have some higher kiddos that like/need a challenge so recently I have been giving those groups something different.  I bought Perseverance Problems from The Teacher Studio
This is a great set of challenging word problems.  I copied sets of these on colored card stock and set them in a basket.  Then those groups come to the basket and chose one, go back to their seats and glue it into their STEM notebooks and solve and explain:)

They love this and so do I!  Makes them really think and some of the problems have multiple answers so when I check them I will kick it back to them and tell them to show me more:)
I just love this set and The Teacher Studio has lots of other wonderful math sets!!!  You totally need to check out her shop!!
Hands On
Again...this rotation varies day to day as well.  Some days the students do Math Sharks.
I got a set of 6 Math Sharks through a grant.  They have several things the students can do: decimals, percent, all 4 operations with several levels.
Or some days I have them do IPads

or they play math games with in pairs or a group:)
One of their faves is pop top multiplication
You can check out a video of how my kids play HERE

So there you have it.  Math in my world:) 
Do you use Math Workshop?  I'm ALWAYS looking for new ideas and ways to make it better:)

Monday, September 8, 2014

Monday Made It - September

Back to monthly Monday Made It!!
I cannot even believe we are heading into our 4th week of school!!! Crazy, I tell ya!
So I have a couple of MMIs for ya...most, not teaching related at all:)
My first is some know how much I LOVE to do that and it's soooo therapeutic to me:)  It is still hot as blazes here in Florida...some of my pots were looking a little sad so I decided to give them a little lift.
Some of the plants I left and then I added some new one for some pops of color and a little lift:)  And you know me......cram as many as I can into one pot!!!
This has got to be one of my favorite made its to date (other than my kitchen), this is still a work in progress.....little back story...the other day I was scrolling through IG and my sister told me to check out Tracy Porter's IG....FAB, colorful, fun pics...she lives in a wonderland...for real!!!  Anyway, I saw a pic of her chicken coop and she has it all decorated....I thought...I need to do that to my aviary....I have all kinds of "stuff" just sitting I have started the makeover:)
Yep...that's a vintage chandelier and vintage bird cage and YEP I painted them!!

I's so excited and can't wait until next weekend to get after it again:)
Gotta have fun in life people:)
I did manage to do a little teacher/school stuff.  One thing I did was buy, print, laminate and cut out these FAB Brain Puzzlers from my sweet friend Amanda from One Extra Degree!
Can't wait to give my kids these to challenge them:) the next made it.........well, let's just say I made it without having a heart attack!!!
Do you see what I see!!?!?!?!?!
I also had a little time to make a fall version of my Spoggle
Fun, colorful pumpkins to spell with:) 
That's all I have for this month:)  Don't forget, you can link up anytime all month!!!  The ONLY rule I have is that you don't link directly to your TPT shop.  Don't forget to leave some love on the blogs you visit:)  Thanks for popping by!!!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Week 2 in the Books:) We're Rockin It into Week 3!!

Yes, yes....I'm late at getting this posted because we are already into week 3...I adore my class:)  They have really impressed me!  Here's a looksy at some of the things we have been up to:)
Morning Math Meeting
The kids have really gotten this down and we have expanded this week into new areas!  They are so quiet while they are working.  I have to say, this is probably one of my fave times of day:)  It only takes minutes but those minutes are so meaningful!
Math Workshop
Math workshop is in full swing:)  I have 4 rotations this year (last year I had 3) so I feel like I'm crunched for time ALL the time but we are getting there.  Our transitions aren't the smoothest but they are getting better.  Our rotations are:
Teacher Time - small group lesson
Hands On - usually a math game
Math Facts - I-Ready computer program
At Your Seat - follow up work from the lesson the day before:)
Daily 5
My  kids have done an amazing job with building stamina so we have been able to start full rotations:)  (again, transitions are a work in progress, but for only having 2 weeks done, I'm impressed)
The kids LOVE to read with our hermit crabs:)
Sadly, I came in this morning to find that Lolly had died:(  She crawled out of her shell last week so don't know if she was sick or what was wrong.  The kids were bummed this morning BUT.....I have a surprise for them...
Liberty will have another friend:)  I can't wait to show the kids and let them name this new little guy/girl:)
We have had 3 Book Frenzies since school started.  The kids fill their luggage every Monday morning:)
Flashlight Friday
We also successfully had a Flashlight Friday last week!!!
This FABULOUS idea I got from my friend Joanne at Head Over Heels for Teaching!  I remember when I first read her post about it last year.....I went nuts!!!  I couldn't get to the dollar store quick enough to get my little flashlights!  The kids absolutely LOVE it!!!!

The only problem with it last Friday was that we didn't have a lot of time to do it.  I swear they would read for hours with the flashlights if we had the time:)
Tiny Terrariums
We also were able to do another engineering challenge from the wonderful
I just LOVE giving them these challenges and then listening to them talk, plan, plot, and work together.  Here are some pics of the terrariums them built:)


They built these Thursday....well boy did we get a surprise when we walked in today:) 
You'll have to pop back by to see my next post for an update:)
Hope your school year is off to an awesome start!!!