Hi friends! I wanted to share with you what I do for math the first week of school before the rest of you go back. The first week of school is usually a short week for kids in my district. I use the first few days to teach the rules and routines of the room. I also want them to get comfortable and make friends. I don't want anyone worrying about the work being too hard. Those first days can be rough on kids, especially the shy ones!
During math, I talk to them about math groups and the different centers they will do (Math games, seat work, work with me). By the time we talk about what math will look like and sound like in the room, we don't have much time left. I do put them in groups and give them a basket of manipulatives to explore.
They LOVE this and it's a great time for them to make friends in their new class. Last year, I only had a few kids on the first day so I just let them play together. This year, my class has doubled in size so I wanted to add some structure to this time. I made 4 slightly structured activities:
For this, students grab a card with a counting bear pattern on it. They copy the card and then continue the pattern on their own. If they run out of cards, they can make a pattern and have a friend continue it.
Here students have a picture of a clock and they make their clock match it.
My class last year loved snap cubes and they always tried to outbuild each other. For this center, the students grab a number card and build a snap cube tower with that many cubes. I included numbers 1-50.
Students make pictures using pattern blocks. I made 6 pictures for them to copy. If they finish all 6, they can create their own image with the blocks.
While the class is busy using manipulatives, I can observe them, do 1:1 assessments, or take care of those 19035098 first week tasks that get thrown on my desk. I love that I don't have to overplan for math that first week because this can be done several times and for varying amounts of time.
Because we are prepping WAY too much getting ready for school, everything but the counting bears activity is in black and white. I printed mine on colored paper. If I don't get to laminate them before school, it's not a big deal because I didn't waste much ink or paper.
If this is something that you could use, grab it by clicking the picture below! (It's free)
PS. My goal this school year is to post more blog-only freebies as a thank you to my readers (so make sure you follow if you don't already).