I am wanting to get away from regular book work. Now, I have always incorporated projects and activities, but there are some good problems in certain books/workbooks. I have never believed that kids need to do 100 problems over a certain topic. If they cannot do 10, then 100 is not beneficial, and if they can do 10, then they can probably do 100. Anyways, I have always chosen certain problems from the book. I have learned that I must give my kids a time limit. I set a timer, and at the end of the allotted time, we go over the problems (so they get instant feedback).
Now that I have set up the background, here is what I was thinking for the criteria for my centers.
- I want to have 5-10 different stations (depending on how many laptops are set up).
- They will rotate through the stations in groups of three (I am big on partner work).
- They will get 15-20 minutes per station (different topics may require more time).
- This could take two-three days to complete the Centers.
- The kids will have a log sheet for all the centers. Since we are just practicing skill, I am not really concerned with a certain grade for each activity. Many of the centers will really be focused on practice and a daily grade for participating and completing.
Here are the centers I want. Again, this will be focused on a particular topic.
- Smartboard activity over the topic
- One-two laptops used for a wiki discussion over the topic. This may in the form of a discussion post or a project on the wiki in which students will build upon what the other students have already written.
- Word problems (5-10) on cards. This center will involve a hot dot pen in which the student will use the pen to select the answer. The pen will tell them if the answer is correct or incorrect.
- Skill/word problems (10-20) on cards. One student will read the question and be in charge of the answer. The other two will have buzzers. They will buzz in when they know the answer.
- Two-three laptops set up for online practice from qtopia and similar sites.
- Book work (I firmly believe paper and pencil is still crucial). 5-10 problems from a book or workbook.
All of the centers will provide instant feedback. At the end of the Centers, I will give a short quiz to assess and see if any reteaching needs to occur. These are my thoughts so far. The first big topic we go through is Proportions. This includes: scale factor, similar figures, and proportional relationships. Hopefully it will come together. It all sounds great in my head!