Image Map

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Guided Math Book Study: Chapter 1

This guided math book study is just what I have needed!  We focus a lot on our 90-Minute reading blocks in our schools and often times the math block suffers.  I have spent a ton of time tweaking, reading, reworking, and in general focusing on my 90-Minute reading block.  I am so excited to spend the summer focusing a good chunk of my planning time on my math block.  Let's face it... most teachers are already planning what they will do differently next year while they are packing up their room at the end of the year!

Chapter 1 in Laney Sammon's Guided Math focuses on why a different approach to teacher centered math instruction is important.  She gives several examples of how most adults can't complete simple math tasks that are important to everyday life and also how students get discouraged and give up on math when they don't learn from teacher centered math instruction.  She isn't saying teacher centered math instruction is bad, she is just saying the math block needs MORE to reach ALL the students.  She had me hooked after the first paragraph!

Currently, I think I do a pretty good job of balancing teacher centered and small group/station work.  Students get the main standard (the one on our curriculum map) taught as a whole group.  I track who has mastered that standard with my own quick assessments.  I reteach in small groups and then reassess again to check for mastery.   While my reading groups fluctuate and  change slowly over time, my math grouping is constantly changing depending on the data from assessments, my observations, and student feedback.   I always seem to have a few students who quickly master all standards... that's when I move them ahead to more complex multi-step problems, challenge them on their math fact mastery, or work ahead to second grade standards.   Here is a freebie first grade Common Core Tracking sheet that I use to track my students' mastery! (Don't mind the messy white marks, just blocking out student names!)  
Grab these up for free by clicking below!

What troubles me about my math instruction is the inconsistency.  My math block is always in the afternoon where my special classes are also plugged into the schedule.  Our specials are always at different times so the afternoons are always different.  Keeping on track and getting things done in a timely manner is always tricky!

Another aspect that troubles me is keeping organized!  Ugh!  I always seems to have piles of papers, forms, charts... the list goes on!  I know one teacher who doesn't have stacks of papers everywhere (and I blog with her... looking at YOU Mrs. VanMeter!)r Hopefully through this process I can find a way to get and keep all that paperwork (and myself) organized!  

Finally, (big UGH) math meetings.  My colleague Kiley from Red Dot Creations and I were just talking about this.  She LOVES her math meeting time.  Like double, triple loves it.  I can't stand math meeting/calendar time.  It bores me to death.  I find myself wanting to just skip and rush through it.  Math meeting seems to be a MAJORLY important role in the Guided Math so I am going to have to find a way to make it fun, interesting, and engaging (for me especially!).  This is a challenge I am ready to take on!  My Kindergarten teacher friends use this simple form during their meeting time at the beginning of the year.  {Click HERE to grab it up for free}
So, what do you do to make your math meeting challenging and engaging!  Leave a comment below...I would love to hear your ideas!  

Don't forget to check out the links below to the other bloggers who are participating in this blog hop and enter the Rafflecopter to win exciting Guided Math prizes!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Great post!! Have you seen ReaganTunstall's Rise and shine binder??
    That may be a great way to make it fun! I am in 2nd and I started the year with it but it did not get utilized as I wanted so part of my plan this summer is to TOTALLY plan out how to use it and ramp it up more with a sister product that will be higher for my guys....

    I hope you go more into your assessments.. That has been hard for me--quick assessments and fluid groups.

    Kickin It Whole Brain In Texas

  2. I also struggle with my math meeting and because I don't like it, I don't do it everyday! That's something I'm hoping to take away from this book as we get to that chapter. Love your checklist to track mastery.

    Swinging for Success
    Follow me on Facebook!

  3. Thank you for sharing such detailed information.
    For Best Astrologer in Kolar. Contact us.