Today's lesson will show that ELA skills can be incorporated into Math activities. In math we are working on composing and decomposing shapes by making shapes with other shapes. The shape blocks were part of our Math Tool Kits that went with our Math Curriculum. They can also be purchased from a teacher supply store. We will write a sentence about what we constructed and then draw a picture and read our sentences to the class. This will eventually be an independent math station after this writing activity. I am using a paper with the sentence frame; I constructed a ____. The students will have to construct an picture using the shape blocks and then phonetically write what they constructed. My students took it one step further and drew the lines as proof of their construction. I use sentence frames especially when I am expecting them to use a new word like, constructed. With repetition they will be able to recognize the word and know what it means. They will have to read their sentence to the class/table partner when finished writing.
"I would like all my friends to come sit on the carpet. I have a fun writing activity for you to do today. I will demonstrate the writing under the document camera. We will use the shape blocks and these new cards. I will use this new writing paper. I will construct the picture from the card on the top part of the paper. I am going to do it all by myself. Do you think you can do that? Good. At the bottom of the page is says in dotted font, "I constructed a ________.". Here you will trace the words and write what you made. Then see if you can draw the picture you constructed.
I planned today's lesson to combine writing and math. The common core standards are easily combined with other content areas. I wanted to extend the shape block construction activity with writing. My students loved drawing the pictures from the shapes and then writing about it. I would like to make this a math station but wanted to introduce it during my writing activity. The sentence includes the math vocabulary of "construct" that aligns to the math standards. Reading and writing are in every content area, so I feel I must show my students how to incorporate their ELA skills during a math activity.
I model constructing a car. I trace the car and write the sentence tracing the words and writing in the word, car.
"I have chosen this card which is a car. I will construct the car on my writing paper using the shape blocks. Then I will sound out the word car, and write the word on the blank line. Then I will read it to my friends. We will all do this at our tables. I will come around and help you."
I have placed a bowl of the shape blocks at each table with a different cards at each place. I made the copies of the writing paper back to back for the quick writers to construct a picture and write about two pictures.
" I have set your tables so you can talk to each other about the pictures and choose a picture that you like. You will have the opportunity to construct two pictures and write two sentences. Please help each other construct the pictures and talk about the shapes you are using. You can trade cards and construct a second picture. I will come around to help you all. I think this will be fun!"
I dismiss my students to their tables by row color. As they are walking to their tables my class paper passers are passing out the writing papers. I will walk around to help those who need help. When finished they can sit on the carpet to read library books quietly until all students are finished.
When all the students are finished constructing and writing we clean up the books and sit quietly on the carpet. I ask the students to have their writing and the shape picture for their oral presentation. I will call all the girls to come up to the front of the class to read their papers. Then I will call up the boys to read their papers. Each student reads by themselves but stands among their peers for support and any reading help they may need. We applaud and cheer after each reading.