Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Debbie Diller Math Work Stations Chapter 1

I believe I’ve taken more naps in the past week and a half than I have in over 20 years!  I’ve never been much of a “napper”, even as a kid…but I can’t keep my eyes open lately.  BUT, this is my week of professional development and I’ve semi-emerged from my hibernation state.

I’ve finally begun reading the book I bought ages ago.  I forgot to mention when I went to the Debbie Diller conference that she signed my book…so exciting!  Check it out!  It’s like I’ve been in contact with genius! 
After going to see Debbie Diller I knew I wanted to implement her vision in my classroom, but I’ve been resisting reading professional books lately.  Now that I’ve napped a week of summer away I believe it’s time to get busy!

Here are the key points and ideas I’m pulling away from chapter 1:

*W.S. are not meant to replace a math program or curriculum – just support and extend it.

*Partners - Something D.D. really emphasized at our conference and then seen here is: W.S. are meant for groups of 2 – a.k.a. partners.  NOT groups.  Why? Increased engagement, less interpersonal requirements, easier to work as a partner then a member of a group.

*What is the teacher doing? Leading a small group, or observing students and taking anecdotal notes.  W.S. are not implemented in order for the teacher to lead small groups, that is not their purpose.  D.D. was very emphatic on this point at the conference.  Groups are important, but so is observing students in action.

*Math talk – I like that D.D. makes such a point of explicitly teaching students math vocabulary and then expecting them to use the language at the work stations.  I’m looking forward to reading more about this!

*Differentiation – D.D. briefly discusses this in this introductory chapter.  It is clear that with some planning, the W.S. are a great means for differentiating math instruction.  In a bin there may be different materials to meet the different needs of different groups, or there may be extension activities for students who can work more quickly…

*Controlled Choice – D.D. talks about allowing “just a few choices of materials or activities within a work station.”

**I am anxious to read more about D.D. work stations.  I think the idea sounds great.  I’m also anxious about the amount of time and planning that go into setting up meaningful work stations that offer the amount of differentiation and choice necessary to make them an effective use of our math time.** 

Did you use math work stations this year? Any tips you would like to share?

Tomorrow and Friday I’ll be at a Linda Hoyt conference.  I’m quite excited! 

Last week I went to an iPad training day.  It has led to my latest obsession - the Sock Puppets app. You talk/tell a story with different settings/sock puppets, and then your voice is magically changed to sound ridiculous. The mister and I cannot get enough of our sock puppet stories! Maybe I’ll share one sometime…

Mrs. Castro
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  1. I'll be doing math stations next year. I wanted to do them this past year but didn't get the chance to. Lucky you got to meet Debbie Diller!!

    Following Optimism in 2nd Grade

  2. i haven't read this book, but it sounds great, keep posting :)
    First Grade Dual

  3. Good job! you can play games to relax after stressful working hours at - - go 9 games - io games online