Wednesday, January 4, 2012

First Day Back and Centers!!!

Well I survived going back to work after our wonderful two week vacation.  Granted, we didn't have kids yet, but hey you have to start somewhere!!  So here's what I need help with from all you wonderful fellow teachers, how do you incorporate centers into your daily plans?  I have acquired many wonderful center activities from TpT authors like:  Erica Bohrer, Rachelle Smith, and MrsMc and now I'm trying to figure out if there is a more logical/organized way to plan them. 

So here's my question to you!  How do you use centers in your classroom?  Do you have a special time set aside each day strictly for center time?  Do you use centers as activities for kiddos to do when you are doing guided reading?  Do you do Math and Literacy centers at different times of the day or at the same time?


  1. Hi Sarah!

    I do both math and reading centers.

    For math, I have 4 stations.
    1- work with teacher, where I usually do the worksheet in small groups so it is more hands on.
    2- Math binders. This is where they graph the weather, work with numbers, patterns, calendar, etc. This is independent, and the same every day.
    3- computers- Here I can choose what game they play to go with the standard that we are covering.
    4- This is the center that changes. Sometimes they play games, draw, measure, write, etc.

    Reading I do the same concept.
    1- Work with teacher. I mostly listen to the students read/practice their sight words. I also use this time to work on any other skills on their report card, such as phone number, address, tying shoes, etc.
    2- last semester I had the students get on, but at this station I will be incorporating a writing station.
    3. Listen to a story on tape or CD, or I have the "Leap From Pens", which the students really love.
    4. Work on sight words. Here the students have their individual sacks with the set of sight words that they are one. This is really good for individual instruction, because they can move on their own pace. They like to stamp out the words, make them with bend-a-roo's and play-doh, etc.

    I hope this helps! This is my 2nd year in Kindergarten, and I feel that it is the best way to give the students the attention they need at their level!

    I also level my groups, so my highest readers are being challenged, and my lower students are getting the support they need!

  2. Bailey that sounds great. I am trying to get ideas ready and organized to begin for next year. By they way, I will be emailing you your freebie this evening, so be on the lookout!!

  3. Hi Sarah! I have a half-done Literacy Center packet in my computer. I will probably get to it over the summer and post it on my blog. If you have a Literacy Block of time, then that is when you do literacy centers. Math Centers should be separate. I talk about Balanced Literacy in my Guided Reading Packet and list centers in the sample lessons.

  4. Thanks Erica! I of course have your Guided Reading packet so I will look more into that. Thanks.

  5. Hey! I don't teach 1st grade, therefore I don't teach centers, but I wanted to stop by your blog and say hi! :)

    -Natalie from

  6. Thanks Natalie, that put a smile on my face after a first long day back at work.

  7. Our whole team does centers the same way. We do them while we work with small guided reading groups. We have rotation cards/folders for each student. They complete 4 fifteen minute centers 3 days a week. There are 2 students at each center at a time, and 4 students together at the teacher table. It's kind of hard to explain how we made the rotation cards. I'll have to post a picture of it on my blog sometime.

  8. Mrs. Wehling,
    Yes, pictures would be great. I'm one of those visual learners, you know. Thanks. So the other two days, what activities do you do since you only do centers three days a week?