Welcome to Workshop Wednesday!
This week, I'm going to share about a VERY important piece of math workshop: the mini-lesson. There are several reasons why it's important... #1: you still need time to meet with small groups and students need to work in partnerships and/or groups to work and play games. If your lesson goes too long, there won't be enough time for that. #2: I can gather quick information on what my students CAN do during my mini-lesson, and that helps me form groups that day, too.
We have started multiplication, so one of my mini-lessons was to see how they could make patterns with models of numbers. I used a book (which I failed to link up with the Collaboration Cuties a couple of weeks ago) by Greg Tang called Math For All Seasons.
Here's an example of one of the few we did in my mini-lesson. I display the book on my board so they can see the picture better:
Don't think I am a perfect mini-lesson deliverer, by any means. There are times where my mini-lessons become maxi... and do you know how I usually figure it out? All my kids have left me. OOPS. When that happens, I just stop and send them to stations and start pulling groups. Do not pass go, do not collect $200. There's no point in trying to get their attention back because they are past their limit! (And usually by then, so am I!)
Do you have any strategies or hints to help keep your mini-lessons "mini?" Please share in your post or the comments below. I'm sure many of us could benefit from it! :o)