Using Centers to Build Fluency

Focus Area: OUR K-5 / IM K-5 Math


Pathway: Understanding

Available Now


The IM K-5 Math curriculum materials are designed to support students to develop fluency over time. In this curriculum, fluency means that students have flexibility in how they approach problems, and can arrive at answers with accuracy and efficiency. As opposed to setting aside specific times for fluency development, this curriculum focuses on helping students build a strong conceptual understanding that leads to procedural fluency over time. Centers are one of the key structures in the curriculum that support the development of fluency through conceptual understanding. In this workshop and coaching, participants will

  • Define the curriculum’s approach to fluency development, and the role of centers 
  • Explore strategies for managing centers 
  • Build a plan for using centers to support their students in accessing the key ideas of an upcoming unit and progressing towards fluency


This workshop is designed for educators who have already had a structured opportunity to explore the basics of the curriculum design and have begun teaching with the curriculum materials. Teachers should be familiar with the day-to-day experience of the curriculum in order to get the most out of “going deeper” into this kind of exploration. 


  • 2 hours 
  • Participants will need a computer with Internet access, as well as access to their curriculum materials


I integrate supports that enable all students to access key math concepts.

Learning Experience


  • The curriculum’s approach to fluency development, and how centers fit in
  • Approaches to using centers strategically


  • Explore common challenges teachers encounter when trying to manage centers in class, including time, materials management, and monitoring of student progress
  • Explore strategies for managing centers more strategically and efficiently


  • Build a plan for using centers with their students during the upcoming unit of focus
  • Share and receive feedback about their plans with colleagues