Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Boot Camp Multiplication + Daily 5

I envy you people who find time to blog frequently. I looked at my blog the other night and thought holy moly! It's almost been a month?! I figured it was about time to do some updating!

This month we start multiplication lessons and the beloved multiplication facts. I remember when I was in 3rd grade and earned ice cream scoops each time I mastered a set of facts, with the promise of a real ice cream party should my entire class ever learn all their facts. I bet you can guess whether I got any ice cream. :) Thinking back to this, I wanted multiplication to be more engaging for my students, so I did what any good educator would do, and looked for a pre-made unit on TpT! Luckily for me, I found this:
I already LOVE the idea of anything boot-camp-ish as my previous school did thematic reviews for end of year testing, and boot camp seemed to always be the popular theme. Plus my husband is military, so camo if a fashion statement I'm familiar with.
On Monday, we kicked off the theme by dressing in our camouflage attire and rocking the greens all day. I personally loved waking up on a Monday and not looking a tad bit professional! :) And yes, this is so totally a bathroom picture, taken in my still not decorated bathroom. Don't judge.
So, in this packet of wonderfulness are many games, drills, table signs (such as Alpha, Bravo company, etc.) dog tags and general ideas for having your own boot camp. I highly recommend doing this if you want a fun way to introduce multiplication!
These are the dog tags that were included in the packet that a fabulous parent of mine laminated and cut out for me. The beads are earned for each set of facts students earn a 90 or 100 on.

The drills are kept in simple black containers such as these. Each set has their own cup, and when I call a table, students go pick up the drill they are working on. They write their names and the date on the back, and when I announce "Go!" they have 30 seconds to complete the 10 questions. Students then graph their results, which I LOVE! So far my students are doing well and LOVE the theme!
Now... onto Daily 5. Perhaps I should call it Daily 3, because that's all I seem to make it to. This is my first year implementing Daily 5/3, and if there's anything I've noticed, it's that every teacher does it differently. I decided to create notebooks for each of my students using the supplies you see below. For the read to self and read to someone, I created very basic reading logs for them to glue in these sections, just for accountability reasons. It's more for my benefit so I can make sure they're doing what they should be.  

As for a schedule, I came up with one late one night and have tried to have my kids make it to these 3 stations AT LEAST! Each student has a copy of this schedule, with their name highlighted. They do an excellent job transitioning, and I LOVE that each student gets small group these 3 days. That's the benefit of co-teaching, I guess! We do also try to squeeze it in on Friday, as well. If you click on the picture you will be able to see it in a larger version. :)

If you have any other ideas to share on how you make Daily 5 work, please do share!

I'll leave you with Paco-Taco, who goes everywhere we do, per request of Lilly. I think we have become "those" people. :) The things you do for your kids...

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  1. I love the boot camp idea!! Definitely going to check that out! A Tall Drink of Water

  2. I teach 4th grade and am implementing Daily 5 as well. I really like the idea of the Daily 5 journals. I am interested in what you have the students do in the other sections of the journals? Thanks for sharing!

  3. Hi Sarah! Each section of the journal is used for one area of Daily 5 in class. When students come to small group, they record key words in their journals, or write their thinking to a question I ask. We usually don't take up more than a quarter of a page a day, but it shows me their thinking in a quick way. It also allows me to do quick writing skill checks, as well. For word work, students stamp in their journals or glue in scrabble tables to add up the letters in the words they are practicing. Work on Writing is sometimes a writing prompt to which they respond, and sometimes it's a skills game such as synonyms or antonyms. On days like these I have them record what they did at that station and 2 examples of their work for accountability and to show whether they are practicing correctly. I hope this helps!

    Feel free to email me at if you have any more questions. :)