Welcome to week 6! This week we are talking about staying organized for math workshop. I just wanted to share what I do in my class to keep things running smoothly. It doesn’t really matter how you organize the materials for math workshop, as long as you have a plan and you train your kids to stick to it!
I have discussed this in previous posts, but I only have 3 groups: teacher time, independent practice, and activity. However, I could use this same organization system if I was to have more groups. My secret? Sterilite drawers. I love these drawers! They make a major difference in how things run in my math workshop. (Also, if you like the Editable Chevron Drawer Labels, you can check them out in my store!)
Oh, aren’t they beautiful! I just love that they are so organized! I have a drawer for each station. (Note: The “Team” drawers are for the rest of the day. I put basic art supplies in each drawer for easy access.) For each student group, I assign a “leader.” This leader goes and gets the drawer at the beginning of the rotations. The drawer stays at the center as the students rotate through. The “leader” of each group is in charge of making sure the group cleans up each center (when I say “one-minute warning”). I don’t spend a lot of time taking things in and out of the drawer. I make sure it has everything they might need, and then I have them replace items as needed. During workshop, the students only rotate with their math folder. They don’t even take a pencil. If they don’t carry it around, they don’t lose it! Now, let’s dig in!
Independent Practice Drawer
This drawer is the easiest. The drawer contains plenty of sharpened pencils and erasers. Every once in a while, I have the students sharpen all the pencils. Also, depending on the day and what we are working on, I might give the kids math manipulatives or have them use their math journals to help them complete their workbook.
Teacher Time Drawer
This drawer contains: small white boards, dry erase markers, white board erasers, pencils, and erasers. The erasers were dish clothes from the Dollar Store that I cut into strips. This is basically everything that I need for my center. I usually have the kids work on their white boards, but we also look at their workbook too. Again, depending on the day, I will either bring out math manipulatives (or use virtual ones on the Smartboard).
This drawer has the most in it because of the wide variety of activities that we do in this rotation. This drawer includes pencils, erasers, colored pencils, glue, and scissors. This way the kids have the basic supplies to play a game, complete an activity, work on a math journal, or complete one of my differentiated task card sets.
Check out the rest of the 7 Habits of Highly Effective Math Workshops Series: