Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Anchor Charts

Let me begin by updating you.  Grad school is keeping me very busy.  I am also in the process of building a house, to be closer to my mama and daddy.  On top of all that, my family is pitching in to help my daddy take care of my mama, who had a major stroke this summer.  I get to do my homework and blog when it's my turn to sit with mama. I am blessed to have such a wonderful family.  I would do anything for them.

One routine that I started this year is "Number of the Day".  This idea came from Guided Math: A Framework for Mathematics Instruction by Laney Sammons.  After demonstrating the different ways to represent a number for several weeks, the students would still only use pictures and tally marks.  Together, we came up with several ways to represent numbers.  We left room to add more ways.

This month we are concentrating on visualization/mental images.  October is a great month for visualization.  We will listen to spooky sound effects and draw a picture of what we imagine the scene is like.  This is adapted from an activity that Debbie Miller suggests in her book, Reading With Meaning. We will also use our senses to write about fall.  This week, we listened to Pirates Go To School. It was a really cute book, and the students had fun making a movie in their minds.  As they drew, they listened to the story again.  After I took up the drawings, we talked about their drawings. Then I read the story, and showed them the pictures.  We compared their drawings to the actual illustrations.  I was amazed with how much detail some of the pictures had. 
Our school district began using anchor charts for comprehension strategies last year.  This year, we will also use anchor charts for math strategies.  I haven't been able to attend the trainings for the math strategies, due to grad school classes.  Hopefully all of the reading I did this summer (Guided Math... and Math Work Stations), will give me some insight about math anchor charts. I'll also check out Pinterest.