Today is Day #2 in my Literacy Station blog series. If you missed the introduction from Day #1, click here.
Today I’ll be going over how to pick stations and how to set-up stations in the classroom.
One of the first things you’ll want to do is to actually pick the stations you want to use in your classroom. I like to have no more than 3 kids (2 is ideal) at each station. So, if you have 20 kids, you might need to have about 10 stations. You also want to figure that some of the students will be working with you so you probably won’t have 20 kids actually at stations at the same time. I’ll go into how to manage this all in my next blog post on Thursday.
Here is a list of stations that could be used in your classroom: (if there is an asterisk by the station, I will be going over that station in more detail later in my blog series)
- Reading Station*
- Spelling Station*
- Boggle Station
- Around the Room Station
- Vocabulary Station*
- Writing Station*
- Making Words Station
- ABC Station
- Handwriting Station
- Reading Response Station*
- iPad/Tech Station*
- Listening Station
- Informational Text Station
When choosing stations keep in mind your grade level and your students’ ability levels. I used Handwriting Station when I taught first grade, but wouldn’t use it in 2nd grade.
Classroom set-up depends a lot on the space and furniture you have in your classroom. At one school, I had a large classroom and tons of tables. So, I had set spots for stations at specific tables. So, students knew if they were going to the ABC station that they were going to be at the table by the door. Then, on that table, I’d have the I Can List or task cards along with any other materials they would need at that station.
Currently I don’t have that much table space, so my stations are flexible and can be done at their desk or somewhere around the room. I have task cards set up in one spot and students grab them and then go to wherever they decide to work. If a station has materials, I store those materials in a large storage container (typically 16 qt size) and then students take the task cards and container to the area where they have decided to work. Writing Station is a little tricky because I do have a lot of materials. I have a shelf in my classroom with more storage containers where students can find the materials for that station. I’ll show a picture of that when I go over my Writing Station in a later post.
So there is a quick overview of station options and class set-up ideas. On Thursday, I’ll be sharing classroom management tips for stations with you. I will go over how to pick partners, timing of stations, using a management chart, and how to gradually release the responsibility during stations.