Stations & Centers Here is a collection of posts about using independent learning stations (aka centers) in class. Enjoy! One Solution: Stations Game Station Writing Station Conversation/Feedback Station Accountability at Stations Solving Station Issues Wrapping Up Stations Simplifying Stations with Templates Proficiency-based Stations 17 Comments Giovanna on February 20, 2014 at 9:23 pm I think this is awesome! To practice all 4 skills each time we meet! AWESOME !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!tytytytytytytytytytyty Reply deutschdmsk14 on August 7, 2014 at 8:47 pm I need to know how much language students need to have before starting stations? How many lessons would one need to teach before introducing stations to a level 1 class? Please reply soon. I am trying to place station work into my long range plans. Thanks! Reply Kara on August 7, 2014 at 10:22 pm I would say as soon as you can! Reply deutschdmsk14 on August 8, 2014 at 9:51 am Yes, but I anticipate comments like:”How are we supposed to read/ understand pronounce this?” I would like a more specific answer to my initial question Reply Kara on August 8, 2014 at 11:01 am You will need to plan appropriate tasks. I would not ask a student to pronounce or speak. Remember how languages are acquired and the silent period is important. Here are some first week stations I would do: recognizing cognates, sorting activities (maybe is is a greeting or goodbye), listening to “Me voy” by Julieta Venegas and highlighting activity, playing an app, fly swatter game, picking Spanish name, a map identifying app/activity, matching questions and answers, making an emotion poster and labeling it in language, etc. Stations are meant to let students learn in small groups, instead of sitting in a teacher-directed lesson. I especially like them for the beginning of the year. Students get a chance to know each other, get comfortable. Also the goals are usually short mini lessons which make nice stations. If I didn’t answer your question, let me know. I may not understand your exact concern. Also don’t be afraid to try it! Those student questions may happen, but that’s ok. Take it as feedback and improve from there. Trust me, I’ve had many of those moments. Once it happened during an observation. The activity was too hard for the students’ proficiency level. My admin discussed it with me, I used the students’ feedback and had an even better activity in the end. Teaching is an art and each of us create our masterpieces a little different, and that’s ok. Do what feels right for you, and more importantly your students! Reply deutschdmsk14 on August 8, 2014 at 9:11 pm Thank you! These are great suggestions. I just needed a few specific ideas to jog my thinking. I may have a few questions later. Thanks again! Reply Karly Pancake on December 9, 2014 at 9:57 am Hey! Question: What twitter accounts do you follow to get the tweets you use for your stations? I am having a hard time figuring out which ones I should follow to get relevant tweets! Thanks for all you do! Reply Kara on December 9, 2014 at 12:48 pm I just use the search bar instead of a specific person. If I need something about let’s say New Year’s, I would use the following terms (at different times): año nuevo, 12 uvas, campanadas, festejar, noche vieja, etc. Reply Sofia on March 17, 2015 at 12:41 am Dear Kara, I have a very uneven 6th grade. Everyone is in a different level academically, as far as motivation, knowledge, ability to learn and behavior. I tried the centers, but a lot of kids take advantage if you are not watching them. How would you handle this? Reply Kara Parker on March 17, 2015 at 2:18 am Do you have a formative assessment after the stations? Reply Susan Segsworth on March 21, 2015 at 7:51 pm Your site has great engaging ideas. I am back in the Spanish classroom–and adapting from high school to middle school–after several years teaching fifth graders. It has been quite and adjustment, and my eighth graders need something with short time spans and lots of activity. Centers sound like a great idea! (My 6th graders love TPR Storytelling.) Reply Kara Parker on March 22, 2015 at 7:13 pm Thanks Susan! Let us know how it goes with them. Reply Veronica Cross (@profeargentina) on May 11, 2015 at 12:45 am Hi Kara and Megan, I’m planning to do stations in my class. I have some questions for you. How long do the kids stay in each station? Does each station have a specific time or do ALL get the same? I mean you would think that playing a game make take shorter than the writing station, for example. Do you use something like a bell to signal “change of station”? What do you do with students that finish EARLIER the task in each station? Do they move to the next one (which may already have students) or do they wait? In your experience how many stations can a student cover in a 60 minutes class? Sorry for so many questions! Thanks for your help! Verónica Reply Kara Parker on May 11, 2015 at 2:59 pm Hey Veronica! Let me say this about stations… there are a million ways to run them, so my advice is just what works for me. Each time I do them, it’s a little different depending on tasks. For a one-day of stations plan: At first, I set a time limit (usually 8 mins in each station) and yes, I ran into the problems you stated. I told them that whether they were finished or not, move to the next. The station that takes the least amount of time was the time that I would set. I had a bell or just played a little music to signal a change and set a timer on the projector. So in 60 minutes, they made it through 4-5 because I leave time to wrap up and assess before they left. You may get through more or less, depending on your stations. Then I changed it to free roaming. It looks crazy and is loud, but it worked better! They still knew they had to show what they learned at the end of class, so they really tried to get a little of each. I still used a ten-minute interval timer from youtube on the board to help them manage their time. I’ll say this again, the end of class assessment is crucial! The stations are for learning and practicing, so they should be able to do something new by the end. Reply Veronica on May 11, 2015 at 10:04 pm Thanks Kara for your answer!!! One more question, what do you do with the student who finishes faster in his group? Does he move alone to the next station or wait for his group to move together? please let me know and thanks again! Reply Kara Parker on May 12, 2015 at 12:09 am If they are free roaming, they can move at their own pace and leave the group. If it’s timed and set as groups, then he/she can wait. If it happens repeatedly, I may cut down the time I have set for each station. I try to keep the times short as possible to prevent that. OR I would talk to that student about trying to get a higher proficiency level and what he/she can do at the station to bump it up. Reply Veronica Cross (@profeargentina) on May 13, 2015 at 12:01 am Kara, THANKS again! You’ve been so helpful! Reply Trackbacks/Pingbacks Could a watch be a model for learning in the future? | Learning Shifts - […] some thoughts that were developed during conversations with a couple of Kentucky teachers around creating stations/centers in their classrooms. After some… Stations Success | Our Full Website at www.balancingmodes.com - […] some great ideas on logistics on running a good station day. These ladies have great ideas on their website… Submit a Comment Cancel reply Your email address will not be published.Comment Name Email Website Notify me of new posts by email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.