As the end of summer fast approaches, there are many uncertainties that the new school year brings. But one thing I can count on is my 90 new fifth-grade math and science students will all be performing at 90 different levels. It is a daunting task addressing all of these needs but fortunately there are many tools out there to help. Here are two of my favorites:
ORIGO Stepping Stones. I couldn’t live without this one. ORIGO Stepping Stones gives me a complete Common Core-aligned math curriculum. Best of all, it's web based. Through direct instruction I have a plethora of Staticware images and interactive pieces ready to go with my whiteboard. From there we can move into student run centers. With the click of a button I can set up a center for one group of students on a Fundamentals game board (using laptops), while at the same time, work with another group on intervention activities.
Khan Academy. During this time, I also have students, on iPads, working on self-guided activities through Khan Academy. This gives me an ongoing look at their progress, as well as intervention areas where they need additional assistance.
These tools help me get about as close to one-on-one instruction as possible with my students. Hope they help you also!
Ashley McDowell is a fifth-grade math and science teacher at River Valley Elementary School in Meridian, Idaho.
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