Sunday, July 10, 2011

Daily Routine

One of the things I pride myself on as a teacher is keeping a very structured classroom routine whereby we don't waste any minutes of precious instructional time.  I work very hard the first several weeks of school constantly reinforcing classroom procedures and expectations.  We do not have sixth graders at our middle school due to space limitations so the 7th graders are brand new to the middle school.  Our 6th grade teachers do an excellent job of preparing them for middle school, but there are several hurdles for our new students to jump like opening lockers for the first time and navigating our unconventional school layout.

I have developed a daily routine that is posted on my agenda/assignment board.  I have laminated the signs and put magnets on the back so it can be changed daily, depending on what we are doing.

1) Warm-Up:  This is always posted on the either the SMARTBoard or the chalkboard.  Students are expected to come into class and start the warm-up right away.

2)  Assignment Check:  Completed assignments are stamped and receive 2 pts.  Answers to the assignment are always posted on the SMARTBoard.  Students are responsible for checking there own work and asking questions if they do not understand a problem.  I work out any problems that are requested or that I feel need further explanation.  Students are responsible for making sure they understand the concepts prior to any assessments.

3)  Lesson, Activity, Problem Solving, or Assessment:  Students are responsible for taking notes and for participating in class discussions and activities.  Material presented in class will be covered on assignments and assessed through quizzes and tests.  Our text is activity based so students will be actively involved in the learning process and participation by all is an expectation.  Problems solving is stressed.

4)  Assignment:  Every effort is will be made to give students some time to begin homework in class.  This is done to assure the students have an opportunity to ask questions about the assignment before they leave for the day.  Due to the length of some explorations this is not always possible.

This class structure has worked extremely well for me and I am looking forward to making it even better this coming school year.

Areas for development/improvement:
~Improving my warm-up time/problems.
~Exit slips-  I want to gauge individual student understanding (which can be overwhelming when you teach over 110 students in a day).
~A more structured set up for intervention and enrichment.  
~More differentiation throughout a lesson.
~Math stations- I just have not figured out how to work these at the middle school level.  I see the amazing things primary teachers do, and am going to try and adapt the concept to my level.

If you have any feedback for me on my ideas please share.


  1. Hi Sherrie,

    I'm wondering what math text you use with your middle school students and what methods you use to hold them accountable for doing their warm up on a daily basis. I have resorted to having students record their warm ups on a single sheet of paper for an entire week and then collecting them on Fridays in order to give points for their participation. Any ideas?

  2. these are good daily routines in class,in case if they applicable in every school and follow every teacher..

  3. These routines sound great! An idea for your math centers..

    I used math centers last year, and REALLY loved how I was able to work with students in small groups to ensure understanding. These were the centers I used:

    1. Homework Club: I would provide the students with the answers to last night's homework and they would grade each other's papers. I also encouraged them to use this as an opportunity to ask each other questions about previous assignments.

    2. "Skillz": I would print a list of quick, calculation problems related to whatever topic we were currently on (ex: solve for x in the following equations) and they would just individually work on the problems. This allowed them to get that quick skill practice, which we don't normally spend much time on in class. You could even do something like Math 24 cards.

    3. Small Group: This was the center that I would be at. I would choose different word problems related to our current topic and at different levels of difficulty so that I could easily adapt the material to meet student needs. We would work through the problems together, and since there were only 4-5 students in the group, it really allowed me to give more personalized support.

    4. Computer group: We used an amazing online program called Mathletics in this group. Students could use any kind of online resource at this station though, it's easily adaptable. Khan Academy would also be great!

    I absolutely loved these centers, we would try to do them every Friday. It gave me the opportunity to meet with every student! I would even sometimes change the specific centers and then just divide the classtime by how many centers I had and set a timer.


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