Saturday, December 1, 2012

Tis The Season for Giving!

Today is the first day of December and as it is already getting dark at 4:30 I wonder where the school year has gone so far? Wasn't yesterday just Halloween?  I feel I have so much more to teach to give my students a greater chance to be successful in mathematics yet the school year is flying by! 

I recently sat down and modified my math fact monthly goal sheet for the year.  I am much further behind than I wanted to, but I am taking more time this year to make sure my students are really grasping those number concepts rather than saying I got through everything.  This is what I got through so far

  • understanding of the equal sign/part-part-whole
  • skip counting by ones, fives, and tens both forward and backwards
  • True or False number sentences
  • Join result unknown story problems (3+ addends).  I really took the time to let my students know my expectations of them when solving problems.  We also worked hard on organization and different ways to represent their thinking (picture, number sentence)
  • Balancing of the equal sign
  • Number before/Number after practice
  • Fact Family (different representations of number sentences)
  • Understanding of number (how many number sentences can you make that equal 7?)
  • +1/-1 math facts- just began at the end of the month
  • Subtract result unknown story problems as well as more join change unknown.  We continued to really work on organization as well as math comprehension (How can we tell if we will add or subtract in the story problem?)
  • skip counting by twos both forward and backwards

  • +0/-0 math facts along with doubles up to 5+5.
  • Join change unknown in both addition and subtraction.  I really took it slow this year focusing on representing the number sentence with the missing second part circled and then using our fact family knowledge to figure out how to move that answer only to the right or left side of the equal sign. They will need to show both equations though. 
  • Continue to work on fact families- I will have a math center activity that works well with this.
  • Still skip counting, but relating it more to math facts (When we count by 5's we are really adding 5 each time).

  • Join and separate start unknown problems and how they are similar/different to change unknown problems.  I again will ask them to manipulate the number sentence from the answer circled at the beginning of the number sentence to moving the answer to only the right or only the left side of the equal sign.
  • We will continue to work on +1/-1, doubles, and +0/-0 facts, but add +2 facts as well.  I know the majority of my students will be able to grasp this concept due to their skip counting ability at this point of the school year.
  • Number order 99-120.  Many of my students are having a hard time writing their numbers after 109 so I am working on number order because of this need in my classroom. 
  • Make ten math facts - working with numbers that  equal 10.
If you have not started any of this extra concept teaching do not stress out about it.  It is never too late to start!  I would start small by counting forwards and backwards by skip counting and working on naming number after and number before. 

I mentioned a while back that when I teach math this year I am focusing on I(teacher) do, we do, we do, and then you(student) do method of teaching.  This basically means that I show them a problem or concept and model expectations by talking my way through the problem (although sometimes I give them a new problem to try first at this point of the school year), then we go through a problem together where they help me solve the problem (this is done on another day than when I worked on the problem), next they tell me what to do the majority of the problem and then I still facilitate and ask questions to check for understanding, finally I send them off to do the problem themselves.  Whenever I send them off themselves we ALWAYS meet back together to discuss strategies and different ways to solve the same problem. 

I was also asked how to help students understand change unknown problems.  I teach this concept through problem solving.  I will do this whole group and really focus on the language of the problem.  Here is an example:
John had 4 pencils.  His friend gave him some more.  Now John has 7 pencils.  How many pencils did John's friend give him?
First I focus on the number sentence by drawing three blank squares.  I then go back to the problem and read the problem again to them.  "John has 4 pencils." " How many pencils does John have?" When they reply 4 then I write 4 in the first square.  Then I read about how his friend game him some more.  "Do we know how many some more is?"  "Does the problem give us a number?"  When they say no, then I circle the whole blank square to show that is where the answer we are trying to find will be.  Next I read the rest of the problem and fill in the last square. 
From there I will ask them if we are adding or subtracting in this problem and how they know.  If they do not know I will read the problem again and ask if giving someone something would be adding or taking away.  Once they see this set up usually they can solve for the answer, but start will small numbers no more than 10 or 5 if you have students that really struggle.  It is always best to keep things easy when first introducing concepts and then getting more challenging as they become more confident.
This has helped my students so perhaps it may help your students as well.  I am sure there are other ways to help this understanding, but this is one way that I have had success with my students.

Now here is the giving part.  I have been busy trying to post December themed activities, but I have also been creating a lot of word work and writing activities.  I know this is a math blog, but I am going to post a sample of some of my word work activities also.

I have Who Has Numbers to 20 is an activity I have been using with my Target Time (intervention) group the last couple weeks.  They struggle with number ID and this activity has helped.

I Wish I Had 10 game is great to practice and prepare your students for those ten pairs math facts.

Fact Family Number Sentence Sort- Students will sort number sentences according to their fact family.  This activity can be used to bring up conversations of why some number sentences look so different than they are used to seeing.

Sentence Structure Sample- This is a sample of some things I am working on for my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  Check it out at my store on Teacher Pay Teacher if you like it.

Primer Words Practice Program- I created a 5 week program for students that are struggling with their Primer sight words.  This is only week 1.  Students take home a weekly practice sheet of 12 words, work on a speed read sheet also sent home, and then a practice book of all 12 words that you copy of 1-2 sided.  Again, if you like these activities you can find them on my TpT store by searching my name in the search engine on that site.

I actually have a number of spin games for the site words as well that also reinforce those weekly words.  I will try to get them posted this weekend yet if I have time. 

That is all for tonight!

Tina Parker

Friday, November 16, 2012

The Friday Before Thanksgiving

Hello Everybody and Happy Friday!

With report cards coming up and new standards to teach, this time of year can be a bit stressful.  I apologize for not getting anything out sooner for November, but my computer was not working from home for the last few weeks.  I have not had time to create as many activities as I would like, but here are the ones I finished up just in time:

Here is a November number ordering activity that will help your students struggling with pausing on the decade numbers (30, 40, 50, ) when counting.  Make sure you read the instructions because I did not order the numbers from 1-120.  There are 7 different ordering activities.

Here are two I have who has number identification games.  Struggling students in our first grade are having difficulty with identifying those tricky teen numbers so I thought this may help.

I have been working hard on fact families in my classroom, but I have not done any formal or informal assessment to check their understanding.  I decided to use this turkey pattern and write the fact families in the belly of the turkey and then have the students write number sentences as many ways as possible.  All year we have been looking at different representations of number sentences so I wanted to see if they could apply the concept yet.

Here is one paper from one of my students.  I don't think you can see but he has the following number sentences:  3+5=8, 5+3=8, 8=5+3, 8=3+5, 8-5=3, 8-3=5, and then wrote vertical number sentences as well.  I asked him to explain to me why he wrote the two I highlighted with black marker and he replied, "8=5+3 and 8=3+5."  I have never been so impressed!! 

Another assessment with a different fact family
This paper was not a one of a kind paper that I saw from my students.  I would not say my class is necessarily considered a high math group, but they are developing the number sense and concepts that they need to have a greater chance to be successful.   All I have been doing is showing them different ways to represent fact families.  I always have them calculate the number sentences horizontally, but will also show them the vertical representation to show that it means the same thing.

Have a Wonderful Weekend!

Tina Parker

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A Week Before Halloween...........

Happy Wednesday!

I cannot believe how fast the weeks are flying by so far this school year!  I am also so proud of my class.  The other day I tried to stop and move on during our fair sharing lesson and they begged me to keep working (No kidding!!).  Of course I told them they could and they worked quietly for a total of an hour.
 I have never had a class that enjoys math more than the one I have this school and it is so rewarding and exciting.  They are eager little sponges that just want to learn more.  Now I know you are thinking I must have such an easy class, but it is not the case at all.  I have just learned that I needed to change my way of teaching to best fit them.  I struggled at the beginning of the school year, boy did I struggle!!  I made little changes along the way to try to make things work and I think I finally found it.  My class needs to be given instructions on the carpet area and then sent back to their tables to work. 

I know I missed posting my equality lesson tips so I am going to try to get a bit ahead and post about greater than, less than, and equal to.  It is important to introduce the concept of the equal or "same as" sign to your students before greater than/less than.  I also spend a few days practicing quanity discrimination.

When I introduce greater than/less than I will write two numbers on the board and ask them what number is larger.  After they tell me I will draw two dots (like a colon) next to the larger number.  I will then ask them which number is the smaller number or is less than (use both terms for better understanding) and place one dot next to the smaller number.  Then all they need to do is connect the dots.(See picture below).  It is important that you also have them read it back to you.  This is created further understanding of quantity of number. 

Here is my Greater Than Less Than Activity that I created for math centers this week. My students are enjoying greater than, less than, and equal so much that I thought I would reward them. This activity has two different center activities that focuses on numbers 0-20. Enjoy! I am also working on creating higher numbers that I will post on my Teachers Pay Teacher site within the week.  This activity supports the Common Core State Standard 1.NBT.3.
For  math homework this week I am sending home the counting by 5's forward and backwards center activity and recording.  I am also working on count arounds (in a circle as a class) both forwards and backwards every day.  This activity supports the Common Core State Standard 1.NBT.1. 
If you end up having questions for me and you have my school email please use that email rather than my gmail address.  I do check the gmail address, but not as often as my school email.
Thanks and have a great rest of the week :)!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Problem Solving. The First Time This Year

Hello Everyone,

What a morning I have had already. I am so glad it is over : ).  Okay time to talk about math. 

I started problem solving in the classroom last week and I was absolutely terrified to see how my class would handle it.  I should know by now that my students amaze me every day and this time  was no exception.  We have been working on whole group problems for the last week and they were loving every minute of it!

 I created learning targets based on our grade level expectations here at Davey.  I chose to create a template that helps guide the students to explain their thinking four ways.  At this point of the school year I require them to draw a picture (using math art, meaning quick sketches.  I do not have them use markers at all!), write a number sentence, and circle and label their answer.  I will tell them that they can just label with the first letter unless they are ready to do second grade work and write the whole label word.  Even the struggling students strive to do second grade work.  This also gives me a great opportunity to work on math comprehension and see those students who struggle in this area.

Here is a copy of the problems I chose to do with my students today.  Keep in mind that we practiced much easier problems the whole week and each day I did a subtraction and an addition problem.  We compared both problems to see how we knew if we would be adding or subtracting.  I needed to facilitate some questions to get them thinking, but many of them could tell me exactly how they know.  I gave them a chance to talk to the person next to them to explain how they know and they all handled it so well.

Before I sent them off to do their work I reminded them that in writing we strive to get to a score of 4 (classroom rubric posted) and how in math we can get a score of 4 as well if they have everything down on the paper.  You should see how motivated they are- I am so proud.

Now that my hopes are so high I decided to start centers this week.  I created some October centers to sell on .  I put a price on all of them, but I am giving you the link to a few of them as a thank you for reading this blog!  If you are interested in a few other products I have you can find my store at .  I am currently working on a missing addend unit as well as a problem solving unit for October.  My goal is to get them up by the end of this week unless conferences delay my progress.

Candy Corn Math Facts This center works both addition and subtraction math facts of +1/-1 and +0/-0.  I included a recording sheet that you can use as a progress monitoring piece.

Halloween Number Order Math Center This center focuses on number order at a variety of different levels.  I also included a recording sheet that has students list the numbers from greatest to least and another one that will have them list numbers from least to greatest.

Missing Number Spiders This center has students focus on number after/number before.  Recording sheet is included.

Halloween Skip Counting  My students are struggling with counting by 2's and 5's so I created this center to focus on skip counting.  I am making sure that students are skip counting both forwards and then backwards as well to extend their number knowledge.  To extend this center for students that need it I created recording sheets and I also have them skip count forwards and backwards w/o the cards.  Even my gifted students need practice on counting backwards.

I started keeping track of my progress monitoring with each MTB (Trailblazers) unit.  Here is an example of what I did with Unit 4 (Odd an Even) after the first two lessons.  First I handed out a random number of cubes to each student.  They were to count the cubes, write their name and the number on the post-it, and then pair up the cubes.  Then all I did was write even and odd on the board in a T-Chart form (simple, easy, and obviously does not need to be perfectly drawn).  I was able to see what students learned and what I still needed to work on.  I also kept in mind that students can just guess even or odd and have a 50% chance of getting it correct. 

I read off the numbers on the odd side first and wrote those numbers on the board.  I then had students raise their hands if they thought one number should actually be on the even side.  They also had to explain why they think that number should be on the even side.  This gave me a great chance to informally assess their thinking even further.  We did the same for the even side.  All the students were very engaged in their learning (even at 1:30pm) and I know the direction my instruction needs to go to meet the needs of my students.

I marked the post-it with an X if the student placed the post-it on the wrong side.  I also marked an X on their post-it if they could not explain even or odd if they volunteered. 

Sorry this posting is a bit longer, but I have not been able to post as often as I would like.  I am looking to purchase a new laptop soon to work more at home so if anyone has good suggestions please send them my way!
Happy Monday!
Tina Parker

Monday, September 24, 2012

Shapes and Unit 3 Tips

Fall is officially here and boy do I wish I could go back to the hot days of July! We are just starting the third full week of school and things are really coming together in my classroom.  At the beginning of the school year I brought in another table to give students more working space.  Well, I found out that it is much harder to get to everyone who needs help.  To solve this problem I stacked 6 at three tables, 5 at the fourth, and left one for a help pull-out table.  It worked so well and the students are much more on task because I am so close to them ALL the time! 

Here are some shape resources for you to use for Unit 2 in Math Trailblazers.  I know many of you are finishing up this unit and moving to Unit 3, but they are still good to have.  The only problem I see is that my google documents now is google drive so some of the images are off.  I will look through more of my files on my home computer to see if I have the originals. 

Pattern Block Shapes 1

Pattern Block Shapes 2

Pattern Block Recording Sheet.

Before starting unit 3 we talked about the meaning of the equal sign or same as sign.  We used balance scales to show that the equal sign needs to balance on both  sides.  This is a great visual.  If you do not have a balance then check around with kindergarten or in the upper grades. 

The following pictures go with Unit 3 of MTB - Pennies, Pockets, and Parts, but can apply to any math program.  Here are just some tips I found useful when completing these lessons with my students.  Prior to Unit 3 we talked about the 

When intruducing this lesson of pocket parts I started whole group with this example.  We talked about how we could draw in the pockets to help add up the number of pockets as well as writing the number of pockets in each box.  We had to find the missing total of pockets and came up with 9 total pockets.  When we wrote out the first number sentence I wanted to see if they remembered our discussion about the equal sign and wrote the 9 = in red.  From there I asked the students what numbers would fit in the other two boxes to equal or be the same as value as 9. 

Today I also talked about part-part-whole with the class.  I like the visual model of the two squares as parts and the rectangle as the whole.  My students really caught on to the hidden pockets lesson after we saw that two parts (squares) make a whole (rectangle).  My struggling students understood much better after that lesson.

This is something I needed to do for a couple of my students to have them understand part-part-whole and writing number sentences.  I know it is hard to see, but I highlighted one part in yellow, one in green.  Then I highlighted a yellow box plus a green box to write the number sentence under the visual model.  I then only highlighted the top to see if they could set up the number sentence with less help and finally the last problem was not highlighted at all. 

Here is my math homework bag lessons for this week I wish I had time to take pictures to show you the activities, but ........

The first one from Shari Sloane ( is the shape fill-in game  Here.  Students play with one other person.  They roll two dice, add up the total, and color in that amount of squared on the shape. I make it two-sided so they get more practice!  The first shape is a star.  I also have a heart Here.

The other homework bag is a count and color activity Here.  Students roll two dice, count the dots, explain how they counted or added the numbers, and then color the box.  The goal is to fill in every box.  I usually make two copies so they can play against someone at home.  This makes it more interactive and fun for the students.

 I am not sure I told people this before, but I also have a classroom blog that I will share and explain activities I create or use for Daily 5. My classroom blog is 

I hope all is well and that these tips and activities are useful to you!

Take Care,

Tina Parker

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Week 2

Hello Everyone!

I hope all of you are settling in to your new routines.  I am still working on it in my classroom.  I have been re-arranging my classroom and redecorating.  I had to replace my first word wall due to glare from my windows so I found a new one.  If you want some great resources check out Zeek's Zoo.  I just google it and it comes right up.  Best of all the resources she has are all free!! 

I am starting to send home math homework this week.  I divided my class in half to lessen my prep.  Here are pictures of how I set up my math bags.  Each group has a different colored marker that will help me be more organized.

This subitizing activity can be found here Directions and the cards found at

This math center is working on naming the number between (missing number) two numbers.  I have the Directions and then the activity can be found Here

I also created some part-part-whole teaching mats that I will share with you.  I have some students struggling with addition problems and I thought this would help.  I have three different ways of viewing the number sentences.  I have the whole on the right side of the equal sign, the left side, and I have one that will show the vertical (traditional) method.  I am using this resource as a means to show different ways of the same problem.  I started whole group and then to the document camera with the class participating, and then had them try by themselves.  Even my better math thinkers were engaged because they were understand the part-part-whole process of addition.  They can be found Here

Have a wonderful week!


Sunday, September 2, 2012

Welcome Back to First Grade!

September 2012

Hello First Grade Teachers!

Welcome back to start a new school year!  I have been nervous already!  If you are in the Eau Claire school district your classroom will look so much different than years past : (.  I took pictures of my classroom to show you that I am just as depressed as you are with the new fire code restrictions.  Twenty percent coverage of each wall is all we are allowed to cover. . . . I wish I had access to a bunch of smaller bookcases and cubbies, but this is all I have to work with this year.  I am going to be positive though! I am making up for the smaller display area by making and using smaller learning targets and anchor charts. I am also stepping up my table displays. Number lines, color words, and shapes displayed on each table to use as reference. Trying to get used to these new requirements : ).
Here is the front of my room.  On the left I have my birthday signs displaying only August and September.  Two months at a time is all I will be able to post.  The tree will come down after Family Day.  On the Right is my word wall and daily schedule. 

A close up of my carpet area. 

Here are pictures of my carpet area. Don't mind the far right mess.  They are by the door and soon the garbage. 

Here is the coat room.  Can you get any more depressing???

Here is the wall where my cubbies are along with my desk.  I am guessing I will need to move both, but I am going to wait and see.  Between the desk and the cubbies is a large mess of cords that will be exposed if I need to move everything.  Keeping my fingers crossed.
Hopefully you all feel much better about your rooms now! 

Here are some math resources I created over the summer that you may find useful in your classroom. 

The first is the number cards, but I also have days of the week and some Daily 5 resources in there too.  You can find it Here.

The next resource is the Math Facts Instruction outline I am planning to use.  I will also be posting all the lesson plans from these lessons.  You may be wondering when I plan on using these lessons?  I am going to get through them as time allows.  I will do the DPPs at the beginning of math, conduct the MTB lesson, and then if there is time I will choose between math facts, CGI, or math centers.  I am also going to get creative and "braid" math concepts into the S.S and Science time block as well.  The outline is Here.

Finally, here is a copy of the first grade CCSS that have the learning targets in the form of I can.... statements.  Here   

Well I am off to find more things to do in my classroom.  I actually have the whole day to myself!  No kids or hubby.  Only teachers can appreciate why I am in my classroom rather than out shopping : ).


Thursday, April 5, 2012

Holiday Week!

Hello Everyone!

I am not proud to admit I am not as far as I would like in math due to being on maternity leave earlier this school year.  That being said the activities I share with you could be used as a review of Unit 15 (3-D Shapes) if you have already completed the unit. 

I completed this mini unit created by Tina Rubie Here.  This activity is super! This teacher does add a triangular prism and a cone in addition to the rectangular prism, sphere, cube, and cylinder.  I just took out those shapes for now, but plan on introducing those shapes at a later time.  Here are a couple of the activities I used that really seemed to get the concept across.
This riddle activity involved the students choosing a shape of their choice and writing three clues on the front that would describe the properties of that shape.

Then on the inside of the booklet they glued a picture of their shape and wrote what shape they chose.  They enjoyed this activity so much that every single one of them wanted to volunteer to share their riddles.  What a great way to reinforce concepts!!

After the first activity I chose a shape for them to have that was different than the once they chose.  Then, they had to identify the shape and write down the properties of that shape.  I used this as an assessment to make sure they understood the concept.  

Another activity I have not tried yet, but plan to do parts of this unit is by Nicole Bunt HereI like the guess my shape activity, the alike and different, and the shape cards to play memory or sort by properties.

Please check out my spring activities from Teacher pay Teacher TpT and if you have any concepts you would like to see me create please let me know @  When I create these items I make sure they are all aligned with the new Common Core Standards.  Currently, I am working on a summer school packet in both reading and math for teachers to use if they need activities to cover the necessary first grade concepts.

It would also make me feel better to get more than two followers of my store.  I know I do not have a lot, but if I get to 25 followers I will be putting on a sale and adding two free items to the store.  All you need to do is sign up as a member and click on "follow me" next to the red star located to the right of my yellow tulip profile.

Take care and be back soon!

Tina Parker

Have a great break!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Week After Spring Break. . . . . . . . .

Hello and welcome back to school this week! The weather was wonderful over spring break, even for those of us that did not travel to Mexico or Florida!

I spent my break fixing my husband's packing mistakes as well as working on activities for Teachers Pay Teachers. If you have never heard of this resource you need to check it out. Most of the activities are absolutely worth every penny I have spent. The best part is that all the money you spend goes to the teachers who created the activity! I now have a store and if you would like to check out my products you can follow the link Here.

You will need to create an account to download any products, but it is free. I do have a free item am working on posting a couple more free items this weekend. Right now I only have math activities posted, but I still need to make my language arts activities more attractive first.

The following are examples of my work on Tpt.  You can follow the link above to see example pages as well as my other products.

Spring Flower Pot Addition- Making Ten
Here is my free item.  This activity works on adding three addends by looking for groups of ten.

Teachers Pay Teachers
This activity has enough math story problems to last you until the end of the school year. Time, money, change unknown, measurement, and more all covered.

Spring Flower Fact Families
This activity is always good for first graders!

I am still going to be posting activities here that hopefully will help in the classroom so no worries! The first activity I am going to give you will support Unit 15 of MTB. 3D Shapes. Follow this link to print off the activity. 3D Shapes Unit.  This activity was created by

The second activity I am posting is one I plan to use next week in my math centers. Who does not love jelly beans and this activity by Jennifer Kadar will have your students sorting, graphing, tallying, and patterning with jelly beans.  Jelly Bean Math

Have a great rest of the week!


Friday, March 9, 2012

March Madness!

Hello Everyone!

We finally are moved into our new house after a week of being homeless!  I have not had the Internet for the last week either so I apologize once again for being behind on my postings. 

I do have wonderful news to share though!  I figured out how to link all my activities I do in my classroom!  After the many, many months of stressing out and giving up I FINALLY got it!!  Thank you to Blogs by Heather on my google search that helped me understand what to do!!  So watch out- now you will be getting activity after activity from me!

This week I focused mainly on measurement for my math centers.  I feel like we have not had quite what my class this year needs so I found some great activities.  One of the activities has to do with looking at a design of pattern blocks and they will need to build the design themselves.  I found these activities from Mrs. Wills website Here .  The other measurement activities I had in my math centers this week were activities I bought from other teachers so I will not be able to post them.  Sorry.

In order to open up these links I am giving, you will need to have a gmail account.  It is free!  I use my account as a junk email that I give when I don't want to be bothered by a company.  When you bring it up in Google Documents you may not see the whole document.  Click on file, download, then save the document.  That should give you the full document.  If not you may be able to print it out and it will look just fine.  Another thing is that you do not need the colored ink.  Many activities I will just print off in black and white and send home with my students.
Pattern Block Designs

Here are more pattern block designs:
More Pattern Block Designs

Finally a recording sheet if you like:
Pattern Block recording sheet

I am also working a lot on time in my classroom in whole group whenever I get a minute.  I am also giving time activities and centers right away in the morning until I get all the folders signed and attendance taken.  Here is an example of a telling time activity I have done with my class:  Both Activities are from The Bubbly Blond website Here
Time Center

Here is a center I created that I can't wait to share!  Please give me feedback both on this activity and any other centers you would like to see me create.  All the graphics were createdby Scrappin Doodles. Here
Time Center by Tina Parker

And finally I am going to get more into money next week.  Here is a preview of one of the money centers I will have for next week.
Money Center

Other activities I am planning on using in my centers next week are place value, problem solving-march theme, breaking up numbers into number sentences, probability, fraction concepts, and shamrock fact families.  Again, I purchased all of these activities, but I am in the process of making many of my own. 
Feedback is much appreciated so keep it comming!

Have a great weekend!

Tina Parker

Friday, February 24, 2012

Teacher Conferences This Week!

Hello Everyone!  I hope your conferences went well this past week and you can relax this weekend!  I wish I could relax, but we have three birthday parties this weekend and we also need to move to our new house. 

I have been stressing out a lot trying to post some wonderful resources I have created for you, but once again technology is my enemy.  Instead I decided to take some pictures of the centers I have done this past week.  I know it is Valentine themed, but I had so many center ideas that we are actually even going into next week as well : )  All of these center ideas were from Abby Mills.

Here is a graphing center that will have the students graph the data and then answer questions for further understanding.  I have an activity similiar of my own that is about graphing fruit. 
This activity has six addition and six subtraction problems.  Students will cut out each problem, glue it in the booklet, and then draw a picture, and record a number sentence.  I really like the set-up and hope to create a set of my own for March.  If you would like a copy of the March problems send an email the second week in March.
This sheet looks very scary and confusing, but really my students just LOVED it.  Each card has three numbers on it.  Two of the numbers make ten and then they add the third number to get the answer.  I can see creating adding pots of gold in a similar activity.

This activity is a true/false center that students will need to look at groups of ten sticks and bits (ones) and decide if the group is greater than or less than a number.  The will then need to record which cards are true and which are false.

I am so sorry I could not get actual activities posted this week.  If you have any concepts your students are struggling in please comment and let me know.  I have about 20 different activities started, but not finished yet.  I do have two activities finished that I would be willing to email to you.  One is Number ID up to 1000 and the other is telling time (analog, digital).  Let me know you are interested and I can get it to you: .

Thanks again for the support of this blog and have a wonderful weekend!


Thursday, February 9, 2012

Happy 100th Week!

Hello Everyone!

I hope your 100th day went well this week.  I wonder with the new common core standards if we will have to celebrate the 120th day next year? :)

I know I am a bit late with this reminder, but remember to record the sky for the weather lab this month.  One way I remember to fill in the calendar is to have my students do it right away in the morning after they sign in.  Otherwise we are rushing so much during the day that it can easily be overlooked. 

I found some really cool clip art sites that I will share with you.  This could help you in the future cover information that is needed in the new common core standards.

US Money 
This link is US common currency

2D and 3D Shapes
Here is one on 2D and 3D shapes

This one I really like on Clocks and time.  I am currently finishing up a center that teaches the digital, analog, and the written versions of time.  I will post it as soon as I get it finished!

Place Value
This one is on place value- bits, skinny, and flats.  We don't use them much in first grade, but with the new common core standards we will!

Have a great rest of the week!


Thursday, February 2, 2012

Common Core Standards

Hi Everyone! 

I am late covering the concept of equality with my students this year because of my maternity leave so today was the day.  I asked them to answer the question: True or False 3=3.  When they came into the room they had to write either true or false by their name.  I took a picture so you could see the results first hand, but once again I can't get it posted.  Basically 19 students wrote false and only one wrote true.  Until I started doing this activity a few years ago I assumed that all my students understood equality and the equal sign.  The truth is that they do not!!  So I went through the lesson whole group about balance and "same as" and there still are some students that struggle with the concept, especially when I started challenging them with problems 4+1=3+2 or 3+3=7-1.  The majority caught on pretty quick, but I know I need to keep reviewing. 

Math Center Lesson Plan for
Week of Jan. 30 - Feb.3
Spin to Win- Race to 120 (1.NBT.1)
Teach Me
JCU AND SCU CGI problems- (1.OA.1)
Time Myself
1.NBT.1- Counting as fast as they can in 30 sec. forwards and backwards by 1’s, 5’s, and 10’s
Placing random numbers on an empty number line. (1.NBT.1)
TILES  (measuring area of shapes)– (1.G.1)
Math fact
Students are timing each other going through a list of 10 -0 and 10 -1 facts and recording their times.

Notes:  I am taking this week to assess all students one on one to determine how they are solving their addition problems.  (do they count on, use fingers, know doubles, doubles plus one, and so on).  From these results I will then create pull-out groups to work on their skills.

As I go through the third week of my math centers I am noticing that this is easier to prep than I thought.  Instead of changing the counting as fast as they can I am leaving it in for one more week because they are loving it and it is always good to practice both forwards and backwards counting. 

With the 100th day coming up here are some resources I plan on doing that week:

- Race to 100 game- print off a 100 chart (or a blank one and have them fill in the numbers if you want to assess them!), give each pair a die, and take turns rolling and adding on from 0 based on the number rolled.

Number order 99-120   - This sheet is challenging for some due to the font from "Babbling Abby's" Website where I found this resource.  I am planning to re-create a document similar with better font.

One hundred days ago I could not.pdf   This activity is not math, but I thought I would share.  I plan to create a class book. 

Equal or Not Equal  

I created this equality sheet to check for understanding after the initial lesson I did with my kids. 

Once again I will try to post more activities as I find them. 


Thursday, January 19, 2012

Math Centers- Week One

Well I finished up one week of my new math centers and I thought I would report how everything went. 

I put my students in groups so that I had at least one high, middle, and lower student in each group.  This is so when I pull them at my center the other groups are not as large.  It seemed to go well so far.  Here is an example of what activities I am doing.  I also send home weekly math activities so I may have the center activities be older math homework so it will be less prep.  Even if I don't double dip the prep is very minor compared to me making 5 different centers every other week.  Once again, I am only taking 10-15 minutes three times a week with these centers. 

Math Center Lesson Plan for
Week of Jan. 16-20

Pattern Blocks- guided discovery using pattern blocks. 
Teach Me
Problem solving –join change unknown problem type or fact strategies.
Time Myself
Timing counting by 1’s, 5’s, 10’s forward and backwards using stopwatches.  They time themselves three times.
Center #1
Race to 200 game.  They have a 100’s chart that starts at 101-200.  Roll one die and cross off squares until one person gets to 200.
Center #2
Number Order- cut and organize mixed up numbers from 99-120.
Mrs. P
*math fact strategies- +0, -0, +1, -1 review. 

Notes:  All groups will go 10-15 minutes.  All activities are in numbered bins and ready to go so the set-up and cleaning up is very quick. 

Here are the "Teach Me" problems that they will solve and teach each other:
Teaching Station:
Solve the following problems two different ways:
Jon had 4 fish in a tank.  His mom told him to buy some more.  He now has 9 fish in the tank.  How many fish did he buy? 
1.      Show a picture
2.     Show a number sentence
3.      Explain your thinking
4.      Ask for any questions

Jen saw 14 ducks in the pond.  Some of the ducks left the pond.  Now there are 6 ducks in the pond.  How many ducks left the pond? 
1.  Show a picture
2.  Show a number sentence
3.  Explain your thinking
4.  Ask for any questions

Bill and Jill had a birthday party.  Bill invited 7 boys and Jill invited 6 girls.  How many kids were at the party?
1.  Show a picture
2.  Show a number sentence
3.  Explain your thinking
4.  Ask for any questions
Tell your partner how you solve these problems:







Here are the timing myself activities- I borrowed the stopwatches from our PE teacher-
Timing Myself- Time yourself three times and record to see if you are faster!

1.  Time yourself counting by ones as fast as you can in 30 seconds. 
- I got to number ___________           ____________        ___________

2.  Time yourself counting by 5’s as fast as you can in 20 seconds.
- I got to number ___________           ____________        ___________

3.  Time yourself counting by 10’s as fast as you can in 20 seconds.
- I got to number ___________           ____________        ___________

4.  Time yourself counting by 10’s backwards from 100-0 as fast as you can. 
My time was ___________   ____________        ___________

5.  Time yourself counting backwards by ones from 100-0 as fast as you can.
My time was ___________   ____________        ___________

6.  Time yourself counting backwards by 5’s from 100-0 as fast as you can.
My time was ___________   ____________        ___________         

If you would like the race to 200 game or the number order sheet please email me and I will get you a copy if these links do not work. 
Both the 99-120 number order and the race to 200 template was created by katie King.
Number order

Race to 200

Please feel free to give me feedback if this blog is still helpful to you.  Thanks!!  If you do like the centers I will have no problem posting my lesson plans and activities for you to use and enjoy.