I am new to 2nd grade and am looking through the Everyday Math curriculum. I see that in 2nd grade (maybe other grades too...) kids have a tool kit where all of their "personal" math manipulatives, etc. go into.
Does anyone have any tips for managing these? I don't want them to be so available to kids that the calculators and stuff are coming out all the time and being played with, but I also want them to be accessible enough that it's not a huge pain everytime we need 1 little thing from the tool kit to use in the lesson.
I am used to keeping all manipulatives in a community-type supply area. So, I am not sure how to proceed. any great tips? TIA!
I don't use the tool kits. I keep all the manipulatives in baskets and the kids get hem as needed. I like the kids to have as little "stuff" as possible in their desks. I have the kids get their materials and put them away during transition time before and after math. For example, I'll ask table 1 to put their templates away and join me on the rug for reading...
I broke down and purchased the Tool Kit bags from EDM two years ago. The kids put their calculators, clocks, templates, and other "tools" in these bags and hang them in their cubbies. Before I purchased the bags, a parent had made some out of a thick cloth, but they were falling apart. I TRY and remember to write a little message on the whiteboard each morning that states which "tools" we will need for math that day. The children are expected to get that item and put it inside their desks in the morning as they are getting settled. It is sometimes a problem to have the calculators readily available in desks, because the kids really, really want to play with them until they are needed. I usually tell them that they can "use" the calculators until we get settled for the day, and that sometimes helps. If I forget to write the message on the board in the morning, then we take a minute to gather the necessary items at the beginning of the math lesson. It does take a little time, but we've always managed.
Well had the tool kits for the first time this year. I kept the tool kits in 5 different containers (one for each table) Inside the tool kits I kept a wipe off marker, coins, bills, the thermometer they make, number grid, and base ten materials. I didn't let the kids keep the calculators or the stencil in the tool kits because I didn't want them to be a distraction, to get broken or lost.
for one year. I didn't really like them, it seemed to be a bit distracting for some students. I now have math tools in tubs available for use at anytime as needed, but not playing. I really like the way they take ownership for their learning and pull out manipulatives and tools when and if needed.
When I taught 2nd grade and used Everyday Math, I put each student's tool kit in a numbered zip lock bag. Each "tool" was labeled too to coordinate with the bag. Each student was responsible for tools and replaced anything they lost or destroyed (parents were made aware of this too). Since we didn't always need the tools, the students stored them in a hanging shoe organizer that hung against the wall with pockets on each side. I can't find the exact one, here is what mine kind of looks like (not quite as large though). I got mine at Bed, Bath, and Beyond a few years ago. The tool kits slid in nicely. The kits had the things we used most (money, calculator, pattern block template, fact triangles, etc.). I put the other things out as they were needed. I taught the students how to get tool kits quickly and put them away quickly. This became very routine for them and was much easier than storing them in their TINY desks.
Also, for the money. I sent home a note at the beginning of the year asking parents to send in change...look in front of TE for breakdown of coins. Then I stored the money in the M&M minis tubes. When students brought their money in, they got the M&Ms.
I teach third grade, and I have never found the need to make the tool kits. It takes time at the beginning of the year to make them and time to take them apart at the end of the year to find out what is missing.
Instead, I numbered my calculators, so students use their number to get a calculator. I take out base ten blocks as they are needed for modeling and practice, and then they are put away but available if needed by certain students. Things like a number grid or other charts that are run on cardstock are in hanging folders, and students get what is needed when necessary and then return it to the hanging folder. I send a list of coins to homes, and parents send the "real" money, which is kept in a safe place. (I have never had any theft.) Other materials are numbered like the calculators, and kept in plastic shoe boxes or plastic sandwich boxes, and then taken out as needed.
For me, the tool kits take up space I don't have...and to be honest, what is in the tool kit is not used consistently enough that it needs to be available for every math class.
IMO---Try your first year without the toolkits. If you feel you need them, then make them for your second year. I think you will find they are not necessary as long as your students know where to get the manipulatives needed to complete tasks.