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Help! Math Journals & Workbooks

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Teach-in-1st Teach-in-1st is offline
 
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Teach-in-1st
 
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Help! Math Journals & Workbooks
Old 08-12-2015, 07:15 AM
 
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I am going to try to do math rotations weekly this year. Last year it was more of a once in awhile kind of thing due to time issues. We are now going Common Core, but still using Everyday Math as our curriculum, which has a workbook. After reading up on what to include in math centers, many have math "interactive journals" as a center. I'm still debating on whether or not to even have a math journal. My time block is about 50 minutes, so after I get done teaching a whole group mini lesson, I only have about 25 min. and this includes most days having to complete a workbook page or two that goes along with the section. I was wondering if you do math rotations, what is the best strategy to use, incorporating the workbook and possibly an interactive journal (not to mention the other centers). What do you use your interactive math journal for?

I'm new at this can't you tell? Any help would be greatly appreciated!


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texasteach26
 
 
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Edm
Old 08-12-2015, 06:13 PM
 
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Sorry-long! I struggle with this, too. I really wanted to do a workshop approach, but I also felt like they needed to be doing their Math Journal. I want them to have a separate Math Notebook for problem solving, but have trouble finding time for both. It's been trial and error for me. Here's what has been working for me:

Number Talk or Number Sense Routine (whole group) 5 min
EDM Lesson (whole group) 15 min
Stations (kids travel with partners) 40 min
Share (whole group) 5 min

Math Stations are all games or manipulative- no worksheets. I take a lot from Kathy Richardson, EDM games, Debbie Diller and some that I have found along the way. Usually all the stations are working on the same skill so the kids can choose which ones they want to go to.

As for me- As soon as they're independent at stations, I'm pulling (~3) small groups. This is when we work on the EDM journal or the Math Notebooks. Honestly, usually it's the Math Notebooks because I don't love a lot of the Math Journal pages. The Math Notebooks are also easy to differentiate. We use bigger numbers, or more open ended questions. Usually these are number stories, but on Thursdays and Fridays I pull skill/strategy groups based on what I'm noticing from the week (e.g. These kids need help with counting on, using near doubles, etc).

Towards the end of the year, when they're better at reading directions, l sometimes make stations only 20 min and spend the first 15 min on a Math Journal page. If a kid doesn't finish, we move on. If it's taking them longer than that, it's probably at their frustration level and they're not learning anything anyway. I didn't notice any decrease in test scores when I moved away from the Math Journals, btw! In fact, I think my kids were better than ever in Math! The book Math Exchanges is wonderful if you want more info on teaching small groups. Hope this helped!
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Teach-in-1st Teach-in-1st is offline
 
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Teach-in-1st
 
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Math Journals
Old 08-13-2015, 08:42 AM
 
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Texasteach,
Thank you so much for laying it all out there. I will have to look into the EDM games. My math block seems to dwindle down to about 45-50 min. coming right back from lunch/recess & then bathroom break. I never can get started until everyone is back in the room. I think I will have the math journal workbook as a station (provided I did the whole group lesson), that way I know each student will eventually get to complete the required pages. I'm not sure if the math journal/workbook is required at our school, that is something I will have to look into. I think if we are doing the same things in a station and completing a math worksheet for homework, the workbook is just an old standby. I really appreciate all your information and helpful tidbits!! I do want to look into the Math Exchanges as well, never heard of that. Take care!
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