When I set up my centers, the first thing I did was to decide which centers were MAINLY teaching reading, writing and word work. Then I divided them into those three groups.
Then, I divided my room into 5 different areas. The top row on the grid below has areas that teach reading, the second row is writing, the third row word work (abc), the fourth row book centers, and the bottom row play centers. The children will visit one “area” each day being able to choose from the different activities in their area—one for reading, one for writing, one for word work, a book center, and a play center (only open in the afternoon during free choice time).
Then I made a board to show the children what their choices were. The one on the left shows a board in the process. Photos are only added when that center has been explained and practiced! The photo on the right shows the completed board. A few things, like the photo on the left, adding a symbol at the top of each row helps them know where to go. And, number the groups of kids. This way you know to start with Group 1 in the first row on Monday and then move them down one row each day. If you go to my website www.adsit.net in the download section there is a classroom tour that has each center area labeled like the photo below.
In the photo above, you see how I made my “families”. These are groups of children—all levels, all personalities, all behaviors, etc. Kids that can work well together! Then, the kiddos visit the center areas with their families. These groups are “fixed” unless there is an issue. Once that part is working smoothly, I start to pull small groups of kiddos based on my formative assessments. These groups are very fluid. They may be with some children this week and with different children next week depending on the assessments. Hope this helps those that were in Vegas and those that weren’t! I am in AR tomorrow working with a group of teachers. Super excited---