First Grade Math Warm-Ups: Week of January 5-9, 2015

Welcome back to school!  I don’t know what the weather is like where you are (well unless you’re where I am!), but here it has hardly gotten out of the teens and my bones are chilled!  It was nice to be able to be warm and cozy in Rm. 202 with my first grade buddies this week!  Here’s what we studied:

Monday

Again, true story from my life used for our warm-ups.  It really makes them interested in solving the problem when they care about the context!

Tuesday

This week we’ve been continuing to work on knowing if we should add or subtract.  When we discuss the problems, the question I ask them is not “What answer did you get?” but instead they turn to their partner to tell them what operation they used how they knew what to do.  I am listening for explanations related to the context and what is actually happening, rather than specific clue words.  Just knowing clue words (like “left,” “in all,” or “how much more”) doesn’t always work; depending on how they are used in a problem, they can sometimes mean addition or subtraction.  Or, you can add TO subtract (as in the strategy of counting up), so it becomes even more confusing.

Wednesday

Thursday

This problem is an addition problem, but also gets kiddos thinking about multiplication without really knowing it.  They have to really be thinking about the situation–I bought 2 bundles that each cost \$20–or they will use the 2 and 20 and just add or subtract them.  It was great to see how many kiddos understood the way the problem worked.

Friday

The focus with the numbers in this problem was to help mathematicians use known combinations to efficiently figure out unknowns.  Ideally they would see make 5s to make 10 or see a 6 and a 4 to also equal 10.  This idea of grouping connects to our future (well, really continuing) study of place value and addition numbers within 100.

The Cat’s Away

So I’m home with a sick baby again today.  I HATE to be gone, but sometimes I just have to be a mom, you know?

So today’s absence reminded me of an idea I learned about recently.  I was out a couple of weeks ago, and I used a great idea from a couple of teachers I met when I attended an EdCamp St. Louis conference earlier this month.  They both teach middle school, and are out of the classroom periodically for activities with their school, and so need to leave plans for a substitute.  Rather than just leaving written ones, they record videos to leave for their classes, often teaching the lesson from their couch and giving directions for what they want their students to do.

Last time I was out, I knew ahead of time, since her fever popped up in teh evening.  So with my MacBook, my plans and my couch, I set to work putting together what I hoped would be a great day of learning for my kiddos, even in my absence.  Here’s what I left as a welcome to the day, along with our normal morning routine screen on the ActivBoard:

After they went off to specials, it was time for Writer’s Workshop in our room:

That big blue button sent them here to this video:

Next in our day was Math Workshop.  This video was a little different, but hopefully just as helpful.

Off to lunch and recess they went, and then back into the room for Read Aloud and then Reader’s Workshop.  Again, a flipchart welcomed them with directions:

Ok, well at least it had a place to send them for directions.  Those were here:

And here:

Social Studies followed Reader’s Workshop, as it normally does, and the lesson that they worked on that day was about the Natural Features of Europe:

Unfortunately this was the last day of the week, since we had a Professional Development Day the following day on Friday. We were also going to be out on Monday, too, since it was President’s Day! That meant I wouldn’t see them for what seemed like FOREVER, so I sent them off to their long weekend with this Goodbye and Good Weekend video:

Ok, so if you’re a frequent visitor to our blog, you know that I can’t write anything without ending with my thoughts and reflections.  And of course the topic of this post means that those thoughts and reflections are definitely doosies! (Is that how you spell that?  There was no choice for it in the dictionary. 🙂 )

(Now would be a great time to take a break and grab a snack if you want one!  I know I didn’t warn you that last part would take so long.  Sorry.  It’s ok, I’ll wait for you.)

Thoughts and reflections from using video sub plans: