Monday, September 14, 2015

Anchor Charts

Every summer, I pull out books or order new ones...or both. I study my craft in teaching. I look for ways to improve over the previous year. This year, I latched on to Fred Jone's classroom discipline books. Loved them. They really spoke to me. One of the things that really responated with me was this idea of training the helpless hand raisers. They are the students that constantly have their hand up, as if you can be their personal tutor all day long. They cannot seem to do the work unless you work through Every. Single. Problem. with them. We've all known students like this, and I was quite intrigued with his solution. One of the solutions that Jones mentioned was to use was visuals. Using visuals in the classroom can make the students more independent, he said. I have had some visuals in the past, but I decided to go all out and give it a whirl. In math, I have been creating visual aids. And now, instead of always hovering to help, I can refer my students to  a visual aid that is based on the lesson they are learning. Sometimes it even gives step by step directions. Now instead of spending so much time with each student, I can have them look back and learn to use resources to help themselves. Retention is increasing, people! Then I am free to walk around and check for understanding. And the students are building independence. I call that a win-win.

I found a cute rounding chart and rounding model that I used this year called rounding coaster. Rounding seems to be a bit hard for most kids to understand, but with this baby, I've seen a lot more understanding. I found this great visual aid that I copied here. And we did a page like this in our interactive math notebooks. It's a free printable.