July 18, 2011

Classroom Set-up: Math Manipulatives

I told you I'd be back today! Yay for all of our wonderful new followers :) I love each of you for all the amazing feedback and visits that you give me. It gives me that warm fuzzy feeling knowing that maybe I helped someone else make their class or room or crafty self a tiny bit better. Any who, last week I spent Mon-Thur in my room getting things ready for this coming year. One of the areas that I thought might interest everyone is my Math Manipulative area of my classroom.

Now, a ton of this work was thankfully done for me by the previous teacher. All of my bins are labeled with stickers AND pictures plus they are separated into bins by the different materials. The manipulatives typically arrive in student sets that have just enough of everything for each child. However, at least in my 3rd grade experience, there were times when the student sets didn't have enough for certain lessons. In Kindergarten, having all the manipulatives sorted out by kind is excellent for having the students explore. It also makes it easier for the students to manage the manipulatives. They can actually take out and put away the manipulatives easily. It's definitely better than having them dig in their box for the specific manipulative and try to fit everything back into the too small boxes.

The only thing that I did differently from the previous teacher was that I grouped the manipulatives together. This is really the best thing to do since I have multiple boxes of pattern blocks, 1 inch cubes, coins, etc.

If you are going to be reorganizing your manipulatives I would suggest these tips:

-Label, label, label! Use pictures, words, and even hot glue one of the manipulatives on the outside!

-Have all of your manipulatives together in one section of the room so that they are easily accessible for the students.

-Group them together by type. If you have work mats that go with your coins, put them with your coins. Store all of your number sense items together. Using the main themes of math to organize the manipulatives makes it so much easier for the students to find everything and to put it back again!

I'd love to see how everyone orgainzes their materials too!

Have a blessed day,

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