I can’t believe that I didn’t think of this before. I used inexpensive, plastic picture frames to display instructions for each math station today. They worked very well because they were so large. Students could easily find the next station they were supposed to go to. Also, the instructions were high up on the table so that everyone in the group could read them at the same time without leaning over and crowding. Students actually sat down in their seats and then read the instructions. The location also kept the instructions right in front of their eyes for easy reference. Plus, it preserved my handouts which can get ratty pretty fast after a couple of classes of kids use them.
The kids were so funny as I heard comments like, “Wow, this looks so professional!” I love them.
- I color coded my station names to match my index card colors so I wouldn’t them mixed up. And of course, giant foam dice make even ordinary math problems more fun!
- I made 5 stations but only assigned students to 4 of the stations. Having an empty station really helped avoid any station overlap. As soon as one group was finished, there was always an empty station to go to. I like this better than timing stations and having everyone move at once because students can work at their own pace.
This station activity came from the book “Station Activities for Mathematics, Grade 8” by Walsch Publishing. I have included a document that contains the Station signs I made as well as a one page hand-out for the students (to conserve paper). I also combined two stations so that I had 5 stations instead of four.