## Monday, June 17, 2013

I love back to school time and all the energy it brings to teachers and students.  It is a time to start fresh and try new ideas.  It is also a time to review what kids should have learned in previous grades and begin constructing new understandings.  To keep this fresh feeling going into October, I like to do fall or Halloween themed problems and games with my students.  For my third graders, I am looking to be sure they are VERY solid with double digit addition and subtraction and can read story problems and find the answers.  I created these Common Core aligned task cards to help me with this goal.
 Here is a peak at some of the task cards.  You can grab this set of 4 as a freebie in my TPT store!  Click here to grab the freebie or click here to look at the entire product!

I was thinking about fall and Halloween, but there is a student in this class who does not celebrate holidays so for the most part, I made them fall themed rather than Halloween themed.  I looked closely at the Common Core Table 1 of different addition problem types.  Students in the fall of grade 3 should be able to solve any of the problem types for addition or subtraction with any 2 digit numbers.  So that it what I made.

 A look at table 1 from the Common Core.  It shows the 12 different problem types that second and third graders need to be able to solve.

I also used these task cards recently with second graders.  We had a full week of school to end the year after all of our fun end of the year stuff was done.  To make this week more fun and still learn and practice math, we "celebrated" different seasons each day of the week.  For our fall day, we used these fall themed task cards and played scoot around our soccer field.  We have a gravel track that runs around the soccer field and we clipped 3-4 task cards to each of 5 different clip boards.  The kids each get a clipboard of their own with a record sheet on it.  They scoot around the track and solve one task card at each of the 5 clipboards.  They go around and around until time is up or they have solved all of the task cards.

 A look at the record sheet the kids used to play scoot.  I like different record sheets for different purposes so this set of task cards has 3 different record sheets.
This was a fun way to get the kids outside and getting a little exercise while still practicing math!  We have also used these type of scoot games right in the classroom.  The kids love it!

As kids finish up, I have them get with another student and compare answers.  Anywhere where they disagree on an answer, they have to go find that task card and work out the answer together.  If they can't come to an agreement on the correct answer, they come to me for some help.  When they are done having their "math talk" and all their answers agree, I can quickly check their record sheet against the answer key.  Then if other kids are still finishing up, I often give them a blank task card so they can write their own problem.  Then other early finishers can solve their problem or we can use them for warm ups or homework over the next week.
 When I make task cards, I always include a blank set so that kids can write their own problems.  It is a great way to extend the activity!