Monday, June 9, 2014

Math Work Shop Organization

Hi Friends! It's week two of the Diggin' into Summer linky! This weeks topic is organizing math workshop. You can see my post last week about classroom organization here. 

If you have followed my blog for awhile you know that I LOVE teaching math. It's my favorite thing to teach. Let me give you a little background about myself though. Growing up, I S-T-R-U-G-G-L-E-D with math. I absolutely hated it. In college, I had to take two remedial math classes before I could take college algebra. I was always and still am a reading and writing girl. It was something that came naturally for me. I quickly learned during my first year of teaching that I struggled with teaching those subjects that came more naturally to me. I discovered that my strength was math. Now, I know 2nd grade math doesn't compare to algebra, but it was so easy for me to teach. I can easily break down concepts down on a easier level so that the majority of my kids understand. I'm happy to say that out of my 13 kids (yes, 13, I live and teach in a very small town!) over half of them are above grade level in math and the rest are right on track where they need to be. This makes me one happy teacher! 
I'm going to break down my math block for you. This is what I did this past school year. 

We use my That's a Fact Jack: Math Fluency Minute Tests. This unit is leveled for 1st and 2nd grades. It contains different sets of math facts from 0-20. 

We then move onto our whole group lesson that lasts about 30 minutes. During this time, I'll show a brain pop video if we are introducing a new concept or for a quick review. Every day we work in our math journals and use manipulatives. 

You can read more about my math tubs here

After our whole group lesson we break off into smaller group for math stations. 

During stations my groups are working together on previously taught concepts while I work specific groups on skills they need extra help with. I have a do not disturb light on my table. If the light is on, no other group can come disturb our learning unless it's an emergency! 

Here are so pictures of my stations in action! They are apart of my Bloomin' Math Centers.

This is my first year implementing math stations on a daily basis and I couldn't be more please with them. I have seen tremendous progress with my students this year. 

 Click here to see all of my math units and stations that we use in my TPT store

Click here to check out other math workshop ideas! Check back next week to see my behavior management system! 


  1. I love your chart for your math groups. Do you have that on tpt?

    1. Hi Sarah,
      No I don't have it on TPT. Its just something I whipped up quickly one day. Maybe I need to post it.

  2. I love the idea of your individual math tubs but I could have up to 22 kids. What do you suggest for storage for that many?? Also how many linking cubes do you give?
    Thanks for sharing! :)

    Kickin It Whole Brain In Texas

    1. The first year I used math tubs I had 19 kids and next year I'm going to have 21. I bought the plastic shelf they are on at Lowes (I think). Its not very big. They get 10 linking cubes in two colors. Hope this helps!

  3. Wait a you only have 13 kids?! Jealous!! I like how the kids can mark off which centers they've been to though! :)

    - Katy
    First Grade Kate

    1. haha yes! Next year will be a whole different ball game. I'm at 19 right now. I teach in a very, very small town!

  4. Thank you for your post. How do you choose the materials for your math stations? Do you just pick something that goes along with the lesson that day/week or do you do something from each strand? That's always the hardest thing for me is choosing what to put in there. Also, we have to show differentiation. How are your stations differentiated? Love your probability and fraction tasks. I'm going to check out your TPT. I am going to be broke! :)

    1. Hi Dina,
      For my math stations, I try to pick activities to cover perviously taught skills. I make sure to include at least the topic we covered the week before. I always have practice for the harder skills such as time and money or regrouping. I hope this helps!

  5. I love the math station idea! I have my manipulatives in tubs also, but they just kind of stay there until we use them during a lesson. I'd love to try having my students use the manipulatives more often like you've suggested. Thanks for the ideas!

    Second Grade Sweetie Pies

    1. My students also have individual math tubs; each with their classroom number on it. I have found it difficult for their little fingers to seal the baggies, so I use Crystal Light containers (the more translucent ones) to store the ten rods and the one cubes (base ten blocks). The container will house both nicely - no baggies and no loose items in the tub. Since I don't drink Crystal Light, all I had to do was ask my friends and whalla!

      You know how all the little pieces from their math tubs that seem to bounce, roll, drop or some other way land on the floor. When one is found it goes in the Missing Pieces bucket on the counter. When a student is missing a particular item from their math tub (or game, puzzle, etc.), they first look in the missing pieces bucket.

      BTW, I am a bit jealous of your classroom storage space! How many students do you average per year, and what color are they painting your classroom? (I know, random questions). Smiles to you!


Saddle Up For 2nd Grade