Tweaking My Guided Math

I have used a Guided Math approach to my math block for the past two years and I've had so much success with it. My students show so much growth using this approach and I'm able to differentiate to meet the needs of all of my students. Previously I have split my class into three groups. The problem was that some of my groups wound up being really big. Over the summer I decided I need to have four groups of students.

Or if you need a different visual

Graphics by Melonheadz Illustrations

My math block begins with a whole group mini-lesson then students go to their first rotation. Students who struggle with math concepts the most meet with me first. Then if our math time is interrupted by a fire drill or assembly I'm still able to meet with my two lowest groups. 

Since I added a fourth group I needed an additional rotation. I decided on calendar questions. I can adjust the questions as much as I want through the school year and I also incorporated use of the 100's chart. Last year my students as a whole were very young and they really struggled with both calendar and the 100's chart. You can grab a copy of the sheet I'm using this week and next week below.

(I printed off one copy for each student and put them inside dry erase pockets- love those things!)

I have six math stations this year. 

1: dice game for number sense
2: activity that reviews previously learned skill
3: activity that reviews previously learned skill
4: activity that practices new skill
5: computer game
6: iPad

Students are paired up and go to one station with a partner per day. I have my stations on velcro dots so that I can move them down each day.

I have my student partners listed on the right. (I have one group of three) You can see the numbered stations to the right. Computer and iPad are just icons. 

At the end of our stations we all meet on the carpet to review the answers to the calendar questions and review the skill we have been working on. Today was our first day doing all the rotations and it went really well. It takes my first graders about two weeks before they remember where to go and exactly what to do, but they love it!


  1. This is great. I did guided math for the first time last year (it was also my grad school project!) but I loved it. Now I'm trying to tweak it for this year and for some reason I'm struggling! :) I think it's b/c I actually have MORE time this year to do it the way I want.

    Mrs. Thigpen's Kindergarten

  2. Love. love, love the organization and the cute graphic display.

    Granny Goes to School

  3. I love your math stations board! Would you be willing to share your graphics and icons

  4. Love it! That's how much time I have in my schedule for math instruction as well. I understand that each group has one station per day, but are they all doing the same station when it's their turn in the rotation? For example- each group does computers on Monday when it's their groups turn, and on Tuesday each group does the calendar station when it's their groups turn? Hopefully that make sense!

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  6. I love this!! I am planning on implementing a very similar system because I think it really will help me meet the individual learning needs of my kiddos!
    Question: how do you run the transitions? Do you stop everyone and have them move to the next rotation? How does that flow?