Sunday, August 18, 2019

Morning Work Buckets - Your Questions Answered

I get asked about Morning Work Tubs and Buckets A LOT. I started using them in 2015 and I never looked back. You can read my original post HERE. Honestly, not a lot has changed since I first started using them, but I know you have a lot of questions about them. I am going to try to answer a few of the most asked questions.

One question I get asked a lot, is what do you do at the beginning of the year? Honestly, I will not start using them until September, two weeks after school starts. I tried putting out just simple math manipulatives at the beginning of the year, and that did not work for me. My number one rules is kids need to be independent with them.

Whether you teach Kindergarten or First Grade, you need to take the time to TEACH kids how to use them. The last week of August, I will take our 5 activities to teach the kids. I pick activities that i think my kids can independently complete, after i have taught them. I teach them on the carpet. I have kids sit in a circle and I model how to take everything you need out of the bucket, work on the activity, and put it back. These activities are all designed to be never ending, so they will last for the amount of time you need to work. The beauty of Morning Work Buckets is that some days you made need kids to only work for 5-10 minutes, but other days, you may need 15+ minutes to complete everything. I show kids how they can "start the activity over" if they think they are finished. After I have introduced all 5 activities, I place a bucket on each table and have students "practice" the tubs. Is this going to take longer then my normal 10 minutes? YES!!!!! But remember, if you take the time at the beginning of the year, you won't have to take as much time later on in the year. The 5 buckets I am teaching will last my class the entire month. They will do each activity once a week for the month. At the end of September, I will teach another 5 centers. You can purchase these letter cards individually HERE or in the Kindergarten Morning Work Bundle HERE.

Another question I know a lot of you have asked is HOW do you organize your Morning Work Buckets? I put them in zip-lock bags and I put the bags in plastic tubs. I put everything they need in the zip-lock bag - dry erase markers, letter tiles, math manipultives, etc.Each tub has a monthly label. My Morning Work Tubs are NOT thematic, but I know what month I usually pull them out for. Also, I know that sometimes, I may use a center in January and then again in March. When January is over, I put that bag in March. I made these FREE monthly labels that you can download HERE FREE. I am use the same labels for my Math and Literacy buckets and my book boxes so you will get labels for all of those.

Last year, I started putting numbers on my buckets to help me stay organized. I use the same 5 buckets all month long and rotate them through the tables. My tables are labeled by colors. I know the yellow table always gets box 1 on Mondays. The blue table always gets box 2 on Mondays...and so forth and so forth. You can get the labels FREE HERE. I also make sure there are enough activities in the bucket for each child. For some activities, that means printing out multiple copies of the activities. The activities that need multiple copies, are usually single pages. For letter activities, sight word activities, and cvc word activities, there are multiple copies included.

You can purchase these EDITABLE Read, Write, Build Sight Word cards individually HERE or in my Kindergarten Work Bucket Bundle or my 1st Grade Morning Work Bucket.

You can purchase these EDITABLE Read, Write, Build Sight Word cards individually HERE or in my Kindergarten Work Bucket Bundle or my 1st Grade Morning Work Bucket.

Throughout this post, I have shown you pictures from my Kindergarten Morning Work Buckets and my First Grade Morning Work Buckets.  Each set has more then 50 Math and Literacy activities. There are some activities that are in both products. You can look at the previews to see what is included in each one. I also have TWO FREE activities for you down below.

I have shared this FREE sight word activity before. It is one of the first activities I created for Morning Work Buckets and I still LOVE IT! You can download it FREE HERE.

I shared this FREE Math Activity with you all last spring. It is differentiated with dots, ten frames, and numbers so that it can be used throughout the year. You can download this FREE resource here.

I hope I answered most of your questions about Morning Work Tubs. You can always ask me if you have additional questions.