Saturday, December 28, 2013

New Year Put Together Sentences

Here's another freebie from my store that I just posted.  These sentences are great for morning work or a writing station.  Students read the sentence, write (or trace) it and then cut apart the words at the bottom and rearrange them in the correct order.  Finally, they draw a picture to illustrate it.  It comes with both the tracing version and the blank line version.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Compare Word Problems & the Matching Strategy

Once upon a time, a long time ago in my previous life in another school district, I participated in some research through ASU.  My team teacher and I (we were teaching 1st grade) had a professor from ASU who came in to watch us teach math, specifically, word problems.  He was looking at "children's mathematical thinking" and their "mathematical talk."  We would pose problems to the students, let them choose their tools for solving the word problems (manipulatives, pictures etc...) and then we would reconvene and share their thinking on the overhead projector (see- I told you it was a long time ago).  Well, as we were doing this, the students discovered the matching strategy.  I can't remember if it was during a Compare Difference Unknown word problem or if it just came up during something else.  Once that strategy was introduced, students started using it ALL the time.  They solved almost every word problem using the matching strategy.  It was crazy- they loved that strategy and used it for everything whether or not the problem was a compare type problem or not.

So, every year when I get ready to introduce K.CC.C.6 Identify whether the number of objects in one group is greater than, less than, or equal to the number of objects in another group, e.g., by using matching and counting strategies- I worry that the students will overgeneralize with this strategy.

Usually I have nothing to worry about because the kinders usually struggle with compare word problems.  They forget the question and just want to join the two group together even after doing lots of hands-on activities where were are comparing tower sizes. Here are two things I am using to help teach this standard this year.  This game is in my Kindergarten Math Assessments but I gave it a new, winter twist.  In this game, students play in pairs and take a strip of snowmen.  Then they use a matching board to compare the snowmen.  The idea is that they match them up on the board and the "extras" are the "How many more?"  Here's the link to this freebie.

Then I also created some Compare Difference Unknown word problems using a format that is floating around our school (but modified for Kindergarten).  Hopefully, using this format the kinders will keep track of what they know and what they are trying to answer.  Here's the link to this freebie.

Happy Matching!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

January Math Stations

January's Math stations are finished!  Now I just need to copy, laminate and cut them out! Addition and subtraction is such a big focus when we go back in January- in fact, that's all we do the rest of the year.  So this month's stations focus heavily on addition and subtraction concepts.  Here's a fun freebie that's part of the product. It's called Spin and Count and once the students get used to it, it's lots of fun.  But you have to play it a lot in whole group/small group before it becomes an independent station.  Check out the pictures of it below and click the link to get the freebie.  Spin and Count FREEBIE  And click here to find the product at my TpT store.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

After Christmas Sale!

I'm having a sale on all Winter products at my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  Stop on by and look for January and Winter Products on sale December 26-28th.  KinderKarla's Store

Hope you find something you can use!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Math Journal Proficiency Scale

Since we use math journals for problem solving almost every day I decided to try out proficiency scales with our math journals.  When I created the original one, I asked the students to help me.  We talked about the things that I needed to see in their math journals to tell that they understood the math problem (the 3).  Then we talked about what it would look like if they almost understood (the 2) or didn't understand at all (the 1). Finally, I asked them what would be above and beyond- what could they do extra to show that they really understood (the 4).  This is what we've been using for 2nd Quarter.

It worked really well for 2nd quarter because we haven't introduced addition yet.  Students were just drawing pictures to solve the word problem and circling their answers.  But now that we can finally (I detest our district curriculum map waiting until 3rd quarter to introduce addition) introduce addition and an equation we had to change the proficiency scale to reflect that.  So, my team and I sat down at one of our PLC meetings and came up with this new scale.  It's not much different- written in more kid-friendly language, but it also introduces the idea of an equation that matches that action of the word problem.

And, I made a better anchor chart than the one I had before. I apologize for the pictures- camera was acting weird.

So, I made all of this into a freebie on TpT.  Click here for the link.
Hope it's something that can help your students assess their learning!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Who Owns the Learning?

Educational buzz words and phrases are wonderful, aren't they?  At the beginning of the year, our new administrator was overly fond of saying "We're building the plane as we're flying it" in reference to our school-wide implementation of common core.  Now, that they year is progressing (and we're flying a plane that's not quite built yet LOL) we've been asked to use proficiency scales in our classrooms.  "Who owns the learning?" is now the buzz phrase that is going around our school.  So much so that our school created a video to showcase this.  It's called, surprisingly enough, "Who owns the learning?"  Check out the youtube link here: Who Owns the Learning?  It actually showcases one of my students.  He's talking about math journals.  And the anchor charts that are shown in the video in the first two sections are from my classroom. 

More to come with proficiency scales- I've got a freebie to share and a new product coming soon to use with the proficiency scale.

Wishing you all a Happy Holidays and a wonderful winter break!