Confession Time! Why Traditional Guided Math Groups Drive Us Crazy:
- Students are with the same classmates for the entire Guided Math time period. This may be anywhere for 45 minutes up to 90 minutes. This often leads to behavior issues. Would you want to be with a group of your peers all day every day??
- It is difficult to change who is in each group meaning your groups are likely to stay the same. Once again, this forces students to be with the same classmates for long periods of time.
- If you do try to change up your groups, it can be complicated explaining it to students. Wait, where do I go?? Teachers often find it is easier to just leave everything how it is.
- You are constantly having to prep enough work or activities to keep them busy while they are at each station or group (This means you are planning 3 to 5 things for math time every day) Let’s be real….Ain’t nobody got time for that!!
- Rotation times tend to be equal times in length so students have enough time to do the work of each rotation. No flexibility there.
- There are often no other adults to help manage a group of students moving around the room together. Help? What’s that!? Students left unsupervised tend to get off task.
- Differentiating is very difficult. At best you can differentiate between groups, but it’s hard to plan that many activities. See complaint above…ain’t nobody got time for that!
Why “Flexible” Guided Math Is Emerging as the True Winner:
- Your only set rotation is Meet With Teacher
- You can spend as much or as little time as you want with each group (No more watching the clock!)
- Meet with one group, meet with 5 groups—its up to you!
- Your students are still pulled to your table in groups–however, its much easier to switch them up depending on how they perform with the objective
- Students spend a majority of the time working independently instead of with the same classmates (Physical space=less behavior issues!)
- Students have the freedom of choice (Happy students=on task students)
- It is much easier to differentiate
Here’s How It Works:
Meet with Teacher (You know the drill. This is where you pull “groups” to your table. Medium-high-low is the order I pull.)
And here is the jaw-dropping, brilliantly simple change that makes Flexible Guided Math the champion…
Everyone else is working at their seats!
You heard me.
No. More. Rotating.
The core principle of Flexible Guided Math is providing students with Must Do and May Do activities. It’s that simple guys. Give them tasks they must do, and let them choose what they want to work on.
At. Their. Seats.
Now, of course, you can choose to let your students earn the privilege to work with a partner. But that can be dependent on their behavior and how much work they get done during Guided Math.
Are you with me?
Now is your chance to transform your Guided Math block into something that is less stressful, and actually works.
I’m going to help you get there. Get a FREE Flexible Guided Math How-To Guide Book and learn how to transform your math block!
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