Number Corner Grade 1 Advice for May & June
Skills involved with the pre-made markers are writing and solving number sentences from problem situations involving addition and subtraction, using symbolic notation for the missing value (e.g. + 4 = 7), recognizing that unknowns in an addition or subtraction equation represent a missing value that will make the statement true, solving and creating word problems and more.
If you choose to make the original markers outlined in the Teachers Guide, here’s advice. From the illustration in the Number Corner Teachers Guide, you can see that farm animals are suggested as the calendar marker theme. Since we had started the farm integrated theme at this time of year, the children decided on cow, pig, horse, rooster, chick, goat as the pattern, or an ABCDEF pattern. Here it is. Here’s an example of what your calendar wall might look like on May 7th.
Now, by adding another turn to the familiar game, Two Turns to Win, children are confronted with sums of money well over a dollar. This is a situation where you can challenge your “high flyers” to calculate how much the highest total could be in three spins ($1.50), or what is the maximum amount of money they could end up with one or two spins yet to go, etc. You can collect a nice piece of evidence on the third Monday from the Student Book, which may come in handy when filling out report cards!
Learning to tell time with the expressions quarter after, half past, and quarter ‘til can be difficult for many children to master. I have surveyed my colleagues as to which of these terms they believe are still in common usage, and the consensus is that quarter after and quarter ‘til are still used, while half past seems to be used infrequently nowadays. Therefore you may choose not to stress this as much. Tuesday Challenge 4, putting the months in order was a fun activity for the children, so I would recommend doing this for two weeks and teaching quarter after and ‘til for the other two or three Tuesdays till school lets out.
In the first two Wednesdays the pattern activities give you one last chance to see how your students can analyze and extend new and novel patterns. Here is an example of one child’s growing pattern from Student Book, page 53.
When I first saw Race to 400 at the beginning of the year, I thought, “No way!” Well, if you have had the children conscientiously filling in 100 grids all year you will find that most of your class can handle this task rapidly and with ease. I think you’ll find $50 to Spend to be a great activity because of the visual model using ten frames in the middle of the paper that help children calculate the amount of money remaining for the columns on the sides. When I found myself with extra weeks in the school year these are the two activities I repeated.
Earlier in the year it was suggested that periodically you should consider collecting samples of children writing their own equations. This is a good month to do that, what with the writing of final report cards coming up soon. Here are some examples collected from mid-May. In this first example we see a perfectionist at work! He cried and even wanted to stay in from recess to write more equations! In the second example we see a boy with complete mastery of equations to equal 153! The last example is fairly typical of what to expect.
Many teachers complain that they never have enough time to get the assessments completed. During the remainder of this school year you might have 6 or so each of Mondays, Tuesdays, etc. Allowing for the usual interruptions, here’s what I suggest. The week after Monday Challenge 3 give the first page of Assessment 10 to the whole class as a group. There are overheads of both of these pages to help you explain the task! After children finish the first part of the assessment, have them go on to the next page and fill in the bottom part where they have to count by 5’s and 2’s in the grid. Finally, at least see the kids you’re most concerned about individually and have them tell you how many Unifix cubes they see on the top half of blackline A.55. Calling them aside during Work Places is one possible way to find the time to interview them.