Friday, July 6, 2012

Math Monday on Friday (Freebies!)

It's only been 2 days since I posted last but I feel like I've been neglecting my blog. The fourth of July was spent finally getting my part of our guest room reorganized so that Chris can finish getting his stuff put away. Not too exciting but we did go to a cook out at my sister's in laws and went to see fireworks. Yesterday I had every intention of getting something posted but I got busy working on my new sight word packet. I'm super excited about it. Plus the most exciting part was I got to met up with Natalie from Teacher Tidbits and another teacher, Cindi, who isn't a blogger yet but hopefully she will be. We had so much fun. I love meeting other bloggers and teachers that are just excited about teaching as I am. I know that we must seem a little weird meeting up with people we've never met before. But I feel like I already know the bloggers and teachers that I follow. It has been almost a year since I started my blog and I never expected this experience to be what it is. I have made some wonderful friends and have learned so much. I also think my confidence in my abilities as a teacher have improved and my students have been the ones who have gained from it. I didn't mean to get sappy, but blogging has just been so good for me.
Ok, on to some actual teaching content for this post. It has taken me over a week but I've finally waded my way through chapter 4 of Debbie Diller's Math Work Stations. There is a lot of information and suggestions in this chapter. It makes me excited to try out work stations with my kids this year. So here are my notes about the chapter and some ideas that I really thought were great.
This chapter is all about beginning number concepts work stations.
She starts the chapter with showing some real classroom examples of some of these work stations. She then gives a list what beginning number concepts are in Kindergarten, first grade, and second grade. I really like this list because it gave me a jumping off point. She also lists some vocabulary words that are important for these concepts. I made some cards to go along with the terms that I'll share as a freebie at the end of this post. Then a good part of the rest of the chapter is all about some specific stations you can use. There were so many I couldn't even begin to tell you about all of them. Here are some highlights:
  • Play counting games. I loved this idea because she suggests taking those board games that we probably already have like Hi Ho! Cherry O or Chutes and Ladders and turning them into a math station. Just playing the games is good for counting and one to one correspondence. But she suggested adding a spinner where they move one more or one less than the number they get on the dice. (I've included two spinners as a freebie too.) I loved that idea and will be adding those to my games in the fall as some beginning stations.
  • Five Frame Fun: For each pair of students they need a five frame sheet that has 3 five frames on it (something I made for you in my freebie) , 2 ten trains of cubes of 2 different colors, and a number cube with numbers 1-5. I think you could also use number cards. Tie first kid rolls the number cube and puts that many cubes on a five frame. Then the other child does the same. They have to fill their five frames with 2 rolls. Like 1 and then 4. Of 2 and then 3. The first one to fill all three five frames wins the game. What I like about this was her math talk cards she includes. The students need to say "I have ____. I need _____ more to get to 5." She suggests making a math talk card on an index card to include in the game. I made one as  part of my freebie for this chapter.
  • Memory - I liked the idea of having students match dot cards to numerals or to number word cards. I was going to make a game like this but I just didn't get it done. Plus I thought I might just use a bingo dotter to make a game for this one.
  • Grab and Graph objects - Have a "grab bag" where you place several different treasures like counters, plastic insects, beads or small toys. You need several of each item. A kid reaches in the bag and pulls out a handful of items. They work with a partner to sort, count and then graph the objects. The graph is an object graph rather than a paper graph. Diller includes some math talk sentence frames for this too. There are more ______ than ___________. There are fewer ______ than _________. There are the same number of _______ and __________. 
There are a bunch more number concept work stations that Diller talks about in the book. But these were some of my favorites. She also includes what math concepts you need to make sure that you teach and she offers a few suggestions to go with all of the things you need to model. Another section that I really liked was the connections to problem solving. Diller gave some great suggestions. One I really liked was to make number sheets. On a large piece of paper you write a number 1 through 5. Then you write "if the answer is _____, what is the question?" The students work in groups to write words, pictures and numbers that fit the question. I thought that was a great idea that I plan on implementing in the Fall.
Diller also explores potential problems and how you could solve. My aha moment was with the problem of kids playing a game once and then announcing they are done. She suggests including 5 tickets with the game. Then the winner of the game gets a ticket. They keep playing until all the tickets are gone. Brilliant!
I hope that I've shared something that you can use. I'm really enjoying reading this book and highly suggest getting it if you haven't. Here are my freebies, I made. If you download them, please leave me some love. I've stopped using Scribd because so many people were having issues downloading it. So I just used google docs. So click here to get the files.
I'm linking up with TBA's Freebie Friday. Be sure to check out all the freebies being offered.

Freebie Fridays

I will hopefully be back tomorrow with my post for Daily 5 and some information about my new packet I've been working with a freebie or two from that. So be sure to stop back by.


  1. You're officially ahead of me in Diller's book. I've been negelcting every form of reading lately, and just been sitting in front of the computer - it's been 100 degrees every day this week here! That's so great you got to meet another blogger! We have a Chicago area meet up in a couple of weeks that I'm looking forward to.
    I'm definitely going to check out your freebie! Thanks for sharing!

    Mrs. Castro's Class

  2. It was so much fun meeting you all! I'm giving the blog thing serious thought. We'll see! :O) Thank you for the freebies!

  3. I had so much fun! Can't wait to do it again sometime :)We went to Splash Country today, and had a blast :)


  4. I just finished reading that book in June and found you tonight! So glad I did. I'll be following you now!

  5. Hello Ms. Kerri! I am your newest follower. Please follow me too! Love your blog!
    Mrs. Janelle

  6. I hate that I missed the meetup, but I did have a blast at IKEA! I am already planning a return trip!
    I hope you all made it safely through the storms last night.

  7. Who said that math is hard, boring and it's only for geeks? Math can be fun and exciting! I like those ideas. I must try it myself. My pupils will surely enjoy and learn some team work with these.