March Math Centers

March is here, which means it’s time to introduce all new activities for my math centers. I typically, like to phase in a few stations at a time, rather than introduce 12 activities in one day, but that didn’t work out because of our six recent snow days. I usually phase the stations in, because it’s next to impossible to keep my students’ attention for a long enough period of time to teach 12 different activities. I’ve found that when I hurry through my explanation of the centers, I pay for it later with student confusion and off task behavior. However, we all know that teachers have to be flexible and able to adapt, so I did what I could and we’re now moving forward with some serious test prep stations!

Station 1

This station consists of my Test Prep Task Cards which are all multiple choice questions that cover all of the third grade Common Core Standards. In this station, students use the error analysis form that I blogged about here (free form included) to find the correct answer, as well as to explain why the other three answer choices are wrong. This is a great way to help students find those tricks that appear all too frequently on standardized tests.

Station 2
In this station, students solve a variety of measurement problems including elapsed time, mass, and volume. These task cards are in my Spring Math Centers for Test Prep. I also plan to add a little extra area and perimeter practice to this station within the next week or two.
Station 3
I love these task cards from Rachel Lynette. I think that this set of task cards provides just the right amount of challenge for my third graders. Initially the task cards were a bit tricky, but not so hard that my students couldn’t do them or became discouraged. Instead, they were just challenging enough to keep students completely engaged.
Station 4
This station is a great place value and forms of number review. It allows students to practice reading and writing numbers in standard form, expanded form, written form, and with pictures of base-ten blocks. These task cards are in my Spring Math Centers for Test Prep.
Station 5
This set of task cards is pretty self explanatory. It’s a collection of spring themed addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division word problems.
Since the word problems won’t take my students too long to complete, I added a a little multiplication and division puzzle activity that is a lot of fun. This allows students to review different representations of multiplication and division through grouping models, arrays, and repeated addition or subtraction. These are also in my Spring Math Centers.
Station 6
I wasn’t sure if I was going to share this picture or not. If you look carefully, you’ll noticed that I was using task cards for the wrong month! Just call it wishful thinking! I do have a March version that I’ll have to dig out, because we weren’t quite ready for April. This are in my Spiral Math Review Task Cards.
Station 7
I started using Xtra Math after Christmas, and I absolutely love it!!! I’ll share more about this program in detail in the next few weeks. In a nutshell, it’s a program that can be used on a computer or ipad that allows students to practice their math facts. Students start with addition and work their way toward subtraction, multiplication, and then division facts.
Station 8


This station let me know that we still have some more work to do with different types of graphs. There are six different spring themed graphs, and four task cards to go with each of the six graphs. The graphs included horizontal and vertical bar graphs, picture graphs with a key, and line plots that included fractions. I think the picture graphs were what gave my students the most trouble, so we’ll be sure to squeeze in a little more practice. These are also in my Spring Math Centers.
Station 9
I love these math vocabulary task cards, because I think that vocabulary is such an important part of math instruction. I also like the fact that these task cards review important math terms through such a large variety of questions. My favorite cards are the analogy cards, because I love see my students think about the relationship between words. Students also have to find antonyms, synonyms, represent terms, and determine which word doesn’t belong in a set of words.
Station 10
These task cards from Teaching With a Mountain View are some of my new favorites! They are all multi-part problems that require students to use critical thinking and to apply different math strategies. I think these are going to be a huge help as we prepare for the constructed response portion of our state test.
Station 11
Station 11 had two activities from my Spring Math Centers. One set of task cards was a geometry review where students drew and identified different geometric figures, with a focus on quadrilaterals. The other set of task cards was a fraction review that emphasized comparing fractions with like numerators or denominators.  I allowed students to complete the set of task cards of their choice.
Station 12
For now, station 12 is my Scaffolded Time Task Cards. These cards begin with very simple time questions and then progress to more difficult elapsed time problems. Once students become comfortable with the more basic questions, I’ll also add my Elapsed Time on a Number Line Task Cards to the mix.
I plan to keep all of these task card in rotation until we are finished with our state test in early April. We counted today, and we have March and one week in April and then it’s testing week. We won’t do stations during that week of school, and after that we’ll start a whole new group of activities!

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