Tuesday, October 22, 2013

M.A.T.H. Centers... Finally

I have been doing lots of IRIs and state mandated testing, so my kids were OvErJoYeD to start math centers recently.  I heard lots of things like:  "You're the nicest teacher ever" and "I loooove math centers!".  Made my day.

For the longest time, I had a hard time with math centers but I've finally seemed to find a system that really works.  I use 4 different colored bags to represent the letters M.A.T.H. {master facts, activities and games, talk math, and hands on}.  For each letter I have 3 bags, so there are 12 centers total.  You can find the resources to do this in your own classroom on TpT in English or in Spanish.  {The bags came from oriental trading}

I use a lot of game boards {purchased by our district}, games that we have already played as a whole class, and other easy games and activities.  Click here to get a few ideas of free games and activities.  Here are some pictures of the centers being played in my classroom:

I let students pick their own center and partner, but they are only allowed to play each center once.  The centers are labeled with a letter and a number, so students mark an "X" in the box after they choose their center.

I switch out the center activities and games periodically when we have done a new activity/ game in class.  There is really no schedule to changing the centers, though.  I just change a bag when I have something new to put in it.

I have found it to be an easy and manageable system!  I would love to hear how you do math centers in your class or if this idea sounds like something that you could use.  I can't believe we are nearing the end of October!!