Differentiated Math Fact Practice

Making Ten

4th Grade Resources

4th Grade Resources

Fly On The Math Teachers Wall! BUZZWORTHY Classroom Ideas Blog Hop

WELCOME to a new year of school!  I'm joining some of my favorite math teacher-bloggers for our  periodic Fly on the Math Teacher's Wall blog hop.   Today's topic is Back to School!
Scroll to the bottom to visit the next blog on the tour.  
This year, I am teaching second grade math (and science).  It's only the first week of school, but I'll admit, I'm having a blast.
I have already had an hour observation from my rater.   ( The third day of school!!!)  I guess it went OK.  Right after the observation, I was asked to be the Lead Teacher for grades K-2 math.   One of the things that we talked about in our debrief was the structure of the math block.   
My school is very intentional about creating consistent math routines across grade levels.  I love this!  It creates some great structure that our scholars will be familiar with when they go on to the next grade.

One of the things that all math teachers do at the beginning of the lesson is work a problem of the Day.  I love this!  Some of you know that I have always been big on Number of the Day at the beginning of my math block, so this is an adjustment.  But, I'm all about doing things differently to see if I can get even better as a teacher.    From grade one on, our students are led by the teacher in problem solving strategies on a fixed mat everyday.  This routine has become VERY familiar to out students--so much so that they were telling me how it was supposed to go because I'm the "new teacher."  I teach three periods of math during the day, so I've had lots of help from my young learners. 
This is one of the problems that we worked this week.  I am in the process of creating a problem of the day for second grade for the whole year.  Grades third and above have the Problem of the Day provided for them by the district as part of the curriculum.  But guess what?  Not first and second. 

Some of my students went ahead an started with the standards algorithm.  I said that this was "OK", but that second grade is all about the strategies!  (Of course all MATH is all about the strategies!)
Some students made a graphic representation, either base ten blocks, tally marks or ten frames, and then wrote the standard algorithm.  
Some students ONLY drew pictures or graphic representations of the numbers.
I loved that some of my kids drew VERY elaborate  pictures to solve the problem.  Pictures are so important for early problem solving!  It really gets the kids thinking concretely about math.
Once my students had drawn one thing or used at least one strategy, I prompted them to think of another way to represent the problem.  
This was a great exercise for the first week of second grade.  You gotta love all of the different strategies they came up with!  I'm really looking forward to this year.  This first week has shown me that my kids have some solid math practice behind them from which to build.

The Rest:
This is only the beginning.  Join me and the rest of my math buddies for a great start to the new school year!  This is a really great back to school hop!  Click on the link to continue on to the Math Coaches Corner!

What Am I Teaching Next Year and a FREEBIE

And the winner is... second grade math and science!  I'm very excited to jump into a new adventure next year.  I will be at a large public school district in Houston.  The school is about the same size as the charter school where I last worked.  I will have three classes of second grade math and science -- one will be a bilingual class.  Because I am an ESL  teacher (English as a Second Language), this will not be much different than the classes that I have taught in the last six years.


Unlike the last few years when I have usually had about a day and a half (I'm not kidding!) to ready my classroom, I will be able to start getting my classroom ready in the beginning of August.  I'm so excited to start with a clean slate and look forward to sharing pics of my new room.


Then...there is the question about my blog name:
I am now officially Mrs Balius!


I am busy digging into the second grade math curriculum.  I think that I am really a math teacher at heart.  I had originally wanted to teach MS math when I began teaching, but since I have grown to LOVE the 1-3 group, this assignment is right up my ally.  The curriculum is much more developed that where I have been in the past. I have had to created a lot of my own curriculum before.  Because things are planned out so completely in my new school, it will be a learning curve to follow lessons that have already been written.  I wonder is this will be easier or harder?  I hope that I can still incorporate a lot of my own stuff, especially the Second Grade Number of the Day.


I'm also busy creating new math stations to go along with Number of the Day.   I plan to eventually create centers for each month to go along with both the monthly theme, and get progressively more rigorous throughout the year.  

Here is a look at the Back to School edition.  It includes five differentiated math centers that review the Firth grade Common Core Math Curriculum and the First Grade Math TEKS. (I have said before that they are very similar).  More in this here.
1. Place Value Puzzles:
     Number, base ten blocks and expanded form.
2. Write It! Multiple Representation:
     Choose a number.  Write is different ways.
3. Order It! (Five different options for differentiation)
    1) Three Number Puzzles
    2) Four card number least to greatest
    3) Four card number greatest to least
    4) Four number-expanded form least to greatest
    5) Four number-expanded form greatest to least
4. Odd or Even
    Determine if numbers and place value facts are odd or even.
5. More or Less: (Eight options for differentiation)
    Pick a number, spin an operation, record the answer.
    Eight spinners include with a range of tasks:

     1 more, 1 less, 10 more, 10 less, 5 more, 5 less, 2 more, 2 less
      20 more, 20 less
All of the Number of the Day math stations use the same numbers that are part of the Number of the Day units -- important for practice and re-enforcement of number sense.  
The whole year bundle will be coming soon!!
Number of the Day Math Center practice includes:
**Odd/Even (1.NBT and 2.OA.3)
**Representing numbers using base ten blocks. (1.NBT.2)
**Comparing and ordering numbers using place value. (1.NBT.3)
**One more, one less. (1.NBT.4)
**Ten more, ten less. (1.NBT.5)
**Two more, two less. (1.NBT.4)
**Twenty more, twenty less. (1.NBT.4 and 1.NBT.6)

This unit is aligned with the First and Second Grade Common Core Math Standards, and includes five math centers.  I use these centers as part of my guided math rotations.



Each math station has student instructions, an example page for visual and ESL learners,
and teacher instructions and ideas for differentiation.
Please check our this FREEBIE PREVIEW that includes one complete station FREE:
You may also like my Second Grade Number of the Day whole year bundle:  
The Number of the Day units give your students a lot of practice working with numbers, representation and relationships.  All students need daily practice working with numbers to effectively develop their number sense.
You  may purchase the whole year here.

Stay tuned for more adventures from Second Grade!

Prevent the Summer Slide! and a FREEBIE

School is almost out and I have had a very busy spring.  There has been quite a bit of upheaval at my school and I now have a choice of teaching positions next year.  WIll it be first grade math and science or sixth grade math?  Stay tuned....

I thought that I would share a great unit that I have used for the past four years. (Go to the end of the post to find the free preview)  I send this home for my students to use as summer math practice.  You know, prevent the summer slide, and all!
I contains forty pages of summer math practice aligned to the Common Core and the Texas TEKS.


It is arranged in eight weeks of five pages each.  Each week hits on all of the first grade standards at least once!  It is a great practice.  Second grade teachers have loved that my students have been practicing math all summer.  Best of all it is fun!

Look at what all is included:
Click here if your would like to try this FREEBIE PREVIEW:

Go Texan Day and a FREEBIE!

Go Texan Day is so much fun in Houston!  It marks the beginning of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.  A very BIG deal around here!

The whole city dresses up, including everyone at school.  Here are a few pictures of my day:
And the next holiday around here is St Patty's Day.   This year it falls during our spring break, so we will start our fun next week!
Enjoy this fun Second Grade Number of the Day unit for March.  It's free in my TpT store!
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