Organizing Your Direct Instruction Center

Sometimes I love hearing what other people name their centers in their classrooms. We choose our center names, sometimes without even thinking, and they become the basis of our classroom and something we will inevitabley say thousands and thousands of times. For example, I call my morning center – morning group. Not sure why I went with morning group over morning meeting or morning time. I call my direct instruction area – teacher time. Again no major rhyme or reason there! I have heard other classroom’s that call it IEP goal center, direct instruction, one on one time… Funny, right?! Okay maybe not. Maybe I just haven’t finished my coffee yet…

In my lovely little ‘teacher time’ center, I work one on one or two on one (check out my schedules) on IEP goals. I use this time as a ‘catch all’ to target skills and goals that we are hitting in other areas, need additional instruction or practice, or to work on behavioral skills that need some direct work. I use my monthly data sheets (freebie form here!) to take data in this center as well as keep track of where each students’ data is around the room.

This is an important area to keep organized because I have a lot going on here. I have work and data forms for all students. I usually see students here in time blocks of around 15 minutes and those 15 minutes WHIP by. Sometimes I feel like I barely sit down and our rotation is on the run again. I have got to be in a firefighter state of ready to go the second my little punks sit down across from me. And in my same this is probably getting old rant – organization is the KEY to preventing problems. I have one kiddo who if you do no have work ready for him the second he sits down, he is gone. You need access to everything essential at your fingertips. You will prevent problem behavior and get more down. Okay. Rant over.

My direct instruction area consists of basically a shelf and a table.

But oh – there is so much more than that! This is how I organize myself here:


So the important question is: what do you call your direct instruction area?

11 Comments

  1. Love this organization! I call mine small group. Even though its not really a group! ha! I am an organization freak and I love how organized your area is! As I’m making changes to how I am going to run some things (Small group being one of them) it’s making me want to re-arrange my classroom and I love the layout of all of your “centers”

    I know your students are older than my pre-k kiddos, but do you have any parts of your routine that you do on a carpet, or is it all pretty much seated at a table?

    Reply
  2. I love your organization! I need to get to that level in a couple of my areas. Right now my focus is getting more communication practice into our day so organization has fallen behind a little.

    P.S.I call mine Target Table. 🙂

    Reply
  3. Ours is the “Work Table.” The funny thing is that in our pre-k classroom where students have a certain amount of free play, students often gravitate to the Work Table and we’ll do extra drills throughout the day as students “drop-in.”
    I keep everything sorted in plastic shoe box-sized bins with lids for just this reason. Open bins or boxes would be chaos for us.

    Reply
  4. Aww I love that! Some of my kids prefer to work over choice time too! The extra practice always helps right!? 🙂

    Reply
  5. Cute – I love the name target table!

    Reply
  6. We really don’t do anything on the carpet since we are older. I actually had to get rid of bean bag chairs a few years ago because I feel like that laid back set up lead to a let bit of wandering hands (if you catch my drift 😉 ) So we are all table based. How do you organize your carpet activities Erin? Sigh – I love the little ones 🙂

    Reply
  7. We actually do centers that are all direct instruction for the first hour of the day. We do 4, 15 minute rotations. Pairs of students push a 3 drawer rolling cart with their material in the top drawer, their reinforcers in the bottom two drawers and the data clipboard velcroed on top of the cart to each of the four tables in the room. The staff do not rotate. So all students have an hour of “DTT” (discrete trial teaching). I have K, 1st, and 2nd.

    Reply
  8. I love that idea Christine! I love hearing how others organize their schedule. I really like the idea of the 3 bin drawers moving around with the students!

    Reply
  9. I love, love, love your blog! I thought I was organized, but WOW your classroom gives me so many ideas! We cal. It “teacher time” too. 🙂

    Reply
  10. This is my first year in a speacil needs classroom. I have taught Pre-K for the past 10 years. I will be teaching a TLC class, K-4. I feel like I’m on a VERY fast water slide and not sure what is at the end!! I’m like that kid that is very excited at the top of the slide and hope the bottom is just as great. What are in your folders and bins that you have for each student in you teacher time center?

    Reply
  11. I know! It all goes VERY fast! Congrats on your new job! In the folders/bins are any materials I am using for IEP related goal work and then I usually throw in a few previously mastered tasks in case we have any down time to keep those busy hands engaged! Good luck!

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.