Have you wanted to implement a math workshop model in your classroom, but you only have a 60 minute period?
Sixty minutes for math is not ideal…but I can help you work with what you have. 🙂
There are 4 essential parts to this 60 minute guided math block model.
Spiral Review (10 minutes)
Whole-Group Lesson (15 minutes)
Math Groups (30 minutes)
Closing (5 minutes)
Let’s take a closer look at each of these components and how to make them successful in your classroom.
Sometimes called math warmup, this 10 minutes is such an important part of the math block, even though it’s tempting to skip if you’re short on time. I know sometimes I’ll overlook this step because I feel behind, there was a recess issue we had to discuss as a class, or we were interrupted with a fire drill.
Try your best not to skip this review. It can be simple and fun. You can even play games! Here are a few ideas to get you motivated.
- Practice math facts or skip counting.
- Review a previously taught skill.
- Do just one word problem. Spending 10 minutes with one word problem can be very powerful. Try showing the problem to students with the question covered up. Ask students to think of all the questions they could possibly ask with the information they have.
- Practice vocabulary.
- Do a Calendar activity.
- Use your math curriculum. You may have spiral review or math fact practice you can use.
Whole Group Lesson
Think of your whole group lesson as a mini-lesson. Students have short attention spans, so short lessons are going to be more effective anyway. And, a whole group lesson doesn’t have to be a lecture. Let’s see how else a whole group lesson can be effective:
- Model, model, model – Show your students explicitly what you are expecting them to learn and model it more than once.
- Investigate/Explore – This can be done individually, with a partner, small group, or whole class. Give students a problem and give them some time to explore it and work it out on their own. Then have students share their strategies.
- Math Game – This is a great time to teach students a new game for them to play in a small group later.
Let’s say you have 24 students. Let’s group those students into 4 groups. Your groups may change as you begin new topics, but we’ll talk about that later. A Math Binder can help keep you organized so you are prepared to make the most of your math block.
In this guided math model, it will take you 2 days to complete the 4 rotations.
Keep the math stations simple and 15 minutes each (including clean up and rotating time). We’ll talk in more depth about each of these stations in upcoming blog posts.
- Station 1: Teacher
- Station 2: Math Sort
- Station 3: Computer
- Station 4: Math Game
Like the spiral review, the closing can be tempting to skip and challenging to have time for, especially with clean up time. Keep in mind, the closing can be quick, but is important for students to reflect on their accomplishments and struggles. You can ask a simple question and have students share with a partner. Students could write in their math journals, or you could randomly call on a few new students each day.
- What did you learn today?
- What was the most challenging math task you completed?
- What would you like to learn more about in math tomorrow?
- Write/Share a vocabulary word you used during math today.
- Write/Share a math mistake you made and how you fixed it.
Congratulations! You’re all set to get started with your 60 Minute Math Block. Don’t forget a FREE Download and sign up to get more great ideas for teaching math directly in your inbox each week.