Reflection: Rules and Consequences Circle, Circle, Square Addition Mats - Section 2: Guided Practice


I had a turkey who ate 2 of his candies as soon as I turned my back and moved to another table.  He’s an impulsive little guy, and I didn’t want to be too hard on him, but I also didn’t want my attention—or his—diverted to trying to keep him from eating more candies.  I swiftly and silently took his remaining candies and put them in the back of his cubby. 

Knowing that this would likely happen, I was prepared with little orange circle counters that he could use in place of the pumpkin candies.  I whispered to him, “I want you to be able to focus on your adding practice.  Your other candies will be in your cubby for after school.”

Now, my group is really something else.  You would think that seeing one of your classmates have his candies swiftly removed would send a strong message to use the candies for math, but a little girl near the candy-less boy started licking one of her candies, almost as if to taunt him.  I grabbed a paper towel, (wanting to avoid a palm full of spit), and moved her candies to her cubby, as well. Two kids were now using circle counters instead of pumpkins.  Did it phase me?  Heavens, no!  We had addition to do!

Sometimes, kiddos will just be turkeys.  It happens.  With some groups, it may happen frequently, but the trick is to be ready for it, to downplay the negative and get right back to business, with as little delay as possible.  Two kids in my class didn’t move candies today.  But they did move something very similar to the candies, and most important—they had practice with manipulative counters and a process to record their equations.

If we stay focused on the main goal—while being closely observant of student behavior and progress—we will achieve the goal.  Eventually!


  Eating the counters! Oh no!
  Rules and Consequences: Eating the counters! Oh no!
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Circle, Circle, Square Addition Mats

Unit 2: Addition to 5
Lesson 2 of 4

Objective: SWBAT use an addition mat and similarly formatted practice sheet to develop an understanding of joining sums together and representing with numerals.

Big Idea: Addends are placed in circles and then joined in square-shaped sum areas, and then recorded with numerals.

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