Have you heard the term spiral math review before? If you’re a teacher, then I am sure you have! Today I’m going to do a question/answer session for you, detailing why I am a big fan of spiral math review in 1st grade.
Question: Why should you spiral math content?
Answer: When you look at your math curriculum, does it ever tell you to explicitly go back to teaching something you taught in the beginning of the year? Probably not. I know from personal experience, I may not be able to apply or reiterate something I learned six months ago if I am not actively using it. So, that is why you should spiral your math content. You should spiral and review your content so that your students are getting ample practice with the different concepts they are learning. When students are continuously exposed to content, students are able to further their mastery.
Question: What time of day should I do a spiral math review?
Answer: You know your class best, but I suggest morning work or as your daily math warm-up routine. Between the two, I think it would be best as a warm-up. When done as a warm-up, it gives your students a chance to activate their schema and also feel confident in their math skills before learning something new in your math lesson. When using spiral math review in 1st grade, it’s important to think about the time you use it.
Question: How should we check answers?
Answer: I love this question! I think the best way to check is together. Make your students the experts. During this time, I like to walk around the room and have small conversations with students on their thinking and how they arrived at a certain answer. Then, those students get to come to the front of the room to explain what they did. They might just be teaching a student in your class in a different way that all of a sudden makes the concept click for them.
Question: Will spiral review help with end of the year testing?
Answer: As much as I hate to even reference and thinking about end of year testing, my answer is yes! Without a doubt, yes! If you are reviewing math content all year long, then you won’t feel the pressure to cram in a bunch of different review and practice games and activities right before the end of year tests! Your students will have practiced these skills all year long.
Conclusion: I think that spiral math review is a must. I have seen a lot of growth in my students in the years that I taught and made a point to review and practice our math standards all year long. The years that I used spiral math review compared to the years I didn’t were very telling. To see our spiral math journals, click the links below.
To try a free sample of a first grade math journal, leave your email below to check them out!
Related Post: A Guided Math Activity Students Love