Each day we begin our math block with an interactive online calendar followed by counting songs and videos.
We do calendar on Starfall every afternoon. This website has free reading and math resources for primary teachers. It also has a “more” option that requires paying a yearly fee. The calendar use is free. A detailed description of Daily Calendar math is included in the resources.
Counting with online sources: Today we did counting practice to reinforce the counting skills. We watched two to three number recognition 0-10 videos (one to two minutes each) because some of my students students were still struggling with identifying numbers correctly in random order. We watched "Shawn the Train" and counted objects with him to refresh our memories on how to count objects to ten and to reinforce one to one counting. Since we have started the second quarter of the school year, we added to today's counting practice: counting to 20 forward and back, counting by tens to 100 and counting to 100 by ones to get a jump on our end of the year goals.
I began the lesson by reviewing our shapes chart. We review the names and attributes of circles, squares, and triangles. Then we seize the moment and move on to creating our large rectangles poster.
Me (holding up a rectangle die cut): What do we call this shape?
Me: What KIND of shape is it?
Students: 2 dimensional flat plane! (see video for hand 2D hand signal).
Me: How do you know it's a 2 dimensional shape?
Student (I call on a random hand up): It's 2 dimensional because it's flat and can't move.
Me: Okay! It is a 2 dimensional flat plane and it is flat and can't move. (We discuss the real attributes of a 2 dimensional shape in a later lesson, -------- which compares 2D and 3D shapes).
Me: Well, what makes this shape a square? What can you tell me about this shape? (I draw the shape on the chart paper.
Students (names randomly picked one at a time from popsicle sticks in a jar) are provided with the sentence stem, "The rectangle has __________."
Student 1: The rectangle has four points.
Me: What are those points called? (If student is unable to answer, I ask another student to "help" him or her. (I circle the points on the square.)
Student: The points are called corners (some say vertex - either is accepted).
Me: What could make this shape a rectangle and not square? What else can you tell me about it?
Student 2: The square has four sides the same. (If the student doesn't use a complete sentence to answer, guide them into rephrasing their answer into a complete sentence using the sentence frame.)
Me: Awesome! A square has four sides all the same size. What does a rectangle have?
Student 3: Two long sides and two short sides
We then add the rectangle to our shapes chart and fill in the the attributes portion of All Shapes Poster. Next we take a few minutes to compare triangles, circles, squares, and rectangles by their attributes. I am looking to see if the students could describe each of the shapes.
Management Tip: To call on students, I pull names on popsicle sticks that are housed in a plastic jar. This prevents me from sub-consciously choosing the same students repeatedly or calling on too many girls versus boys and vice versa.
I provide the students with plastic rectangle of different sizes (Magnatiles and Attribute Blocks from Lakeshore Learning). They trace the rectangles on blank copy paper to get a "feeling" for rectangles. I invite them to trace random rectangles, or use them to make a picture (for my higher-level learners).
I then have them circle the angles of the rectangles and number them. I have them number the sides of each rectangle. They also trace the long sides in red crayon and the short sides in blue. My higher level kids have the challenge of recognizing that when two rectangles are touching, they share a side.
We gather on the floor and share our square projects with our talking partners.
Classroom Management Tip: Think-Pair-Share is a great way to get all the kids talking about what they have learned. Once they have shared with their talking partners, they feel more comfortable sharing with the whole class. This is especially important for the second language learners. It allows them to reinforce their thinking as well as academic vocabulary development.
With this exit ticket I check to see if the kids can identify rectangles in the box at the bottom of the sheet. I have them do that section first. They can trace the additional rectangles on top if they finished coloring in the rectangles on the bottom. Note: If you do not want the kids to be able to refer to the rectangles on top while coloring in the rectangles in the space below, fold the pages in half before passing them out.
Once they complete the exit ticket, I separate them into two piles: Meets and Needs. My Meets pile is made up of the students who satisfactorily complete the exit ticket (one or none errors). My Needs pile is made up the students who still additional instruction or a small group experience.
We spend a few minutes discussing what we learned about rectangles.
One student shares that when she put two rectangles together they make a big square.
I have the students come up and share what they have created in their tracing pages and point out the rectangles and the big square.
These observations tell me that theses students may need additional extension activities as we investigate the rest of the shapes. I know from their work that they are advanced in geometric thinking compared to the rest of the class. Tangram pictures is a perfect extension activity. They will either play with real tangrams and a tangram picture book, or online at Tangram Puzzles for Kids by ABCya!