While you are working with a small group, the rest of the class is working in stations. I despise mindless busy work stations. I don't want my students doing "hush activities." I want them to truly be reviewing skills and learning from each other through games and partner activities. (You can find all of my math stations here!) That requires a lot of training in the beginning of the school year (or whenever you decide to start a workshop) because, of course, what do students want to do when they get together? TALK!
Establishing the routine is so important, and I can't stress this word enough: MODEL MODEL MODEL! You have to really show students what it is you expect from them. That means when you first start Math Workshop, you can't start groups right away. It might even be three weeks before you pull a group. You have to be a part of the stations, and of course, walk around and make sure students are on task. But you also want to set a routine for when you aren't able to monitor every minute... you want to teach students to be accountable for their learning. Which leads me to today's planning present!
Today's Planning Present is a student accountability report:
This page is from the complete Launching Math Workshop Guide.
I first got this idea a few years ago from a fellow 4th grade teammate, and it changed the way my stations ran- truly! Copy this sheet front and back to have room for all your stations and even a small group slot if you'd like. Provide 5-10 minutes at the end of each workshop to allow them to write, and then also share out. Students must describe their learning using math language. I think it is important for students to reflect on what they learned each day. Not only does it help me see what they did or did not understand, but they also know I expect them to tell me about what they have done and learned, so they can’t just mess around the entire station time. Often times, this is when their group will tattle on another member too- ha!!
Students must be trained with this part of workshop, too. When you are part of the stations as you set up Math Workshop, point out some things they might want to reflect on at the end. And then of course, have your own reflection page on a poster or on the SMART Board and show the students what you expect to be written each day (complete sentences, math language, etc.). This simple task will allow your students to become such great math thinkers, and it will help hold students accountable for their learning!
I hope this planning present will help you implement Math Workshop effectively in your classroom. Don't forget to head over to Jennifer's blog, Teaching to Inspire, for another planning present!
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