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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Working on Numbers to 120

Need a quick easy game to work on number recognition with kindergarteners and first graders?  I just made a few updates to my spring themed I have who has game and you can now grab it for free!
It includes 3 versions
Version 1 works on numbers up to 20 (great for K!)
Version 2 works on numbers up to 100 with an emphasis on numbers that are often challenging for kids
Version 3 focuses on numbers between 100 and 120
Hope you can use this game with your students!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Number Puzzle Fun!

Over the last few months, I have been creating and using number puzzles with students.  I started with creating a few for some first graders who were struggling with some big number concepts.  The kids enjoyed these so much, I created another set when we started working on telling time to the hour and half hour.  I loved how easy these were to print and use.  They make a great little workstation for whole group situations as well as being a good tool for anyone who needs or provides intervention.  I have also found them to be great to send home for a little extra practice in a fun non-threatening way.  I created several more versions for the first graders.  From there, as other students and teachers saw the fun the first graders were having with their number puzzles I got requests to make number puzzles for other primary skills.  As of right now, I have made a set for Kindergarten, first and second grades.  Take a look!


A Kindergartener matches numerals and 20 frames.  You can grab this number puzzle set for free here!

These are great as a solo activity or with partners!

The Kindergarten bundle is available now!  It includes 7 different number puzzles.  Each one has a follow up worksheet for formative assessment

First Grade
A first grader works on subtracting from 10.

Here is a look at one students' work on the follow up sheet.  This one was given as formative assessment to see who still needed more small group work and who was ready to move on.

A pair of students works together to solve time to the hour and half hour problems.  I love how students know instantly that they are wrong when the puzzle does not fit together.  They are very good at asking for help when this happens!

The visual images on the number puzzles support students who still need a visual model or conceptual development

Another follow up sheet!

These are super easy to put in a top loading folder and let kids take home.  You can include the follow up worksheet like I did here or send just the puzzle.  

The First grade bundle includes 10 puzzles with follow up worksheets.  It includes skills like time, place value, addition, subtraction and base 10 numbers. Want a set to try for FREE?  Grab the Doubles and Neighbors number puzzle set for free here!

Second Grade

Second graders work on counting mixed coins.  This puzzle is available in 2 versions, US coins and Canadian coins.   You can grab the US coins version for FREE here!

A follow up sheet for the coin puzzle

Second graders work on time to the 5 minutes

The second grade bundle includes 10 puzzles working on skills such as coins, clocks, place value, addition and subtraction facts as well as double digit addition and adding 10 and 100 to numbers under 1000!
You can grab one puzzle at each grade level for FREE!!!!  Just click on the link to the product page and select download preview.  Each preview contains one complete number puzzle and follow up sheet that is yours to use for free.  I hope your students enjoy these as much as mine have!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Monday Math Literature Volume 44

Last week I shared Seeing Symmetry, one of my favorite Loreen Leedy books.  This week I want to share another of her books with you.  This one has a slightly different flavor than her other books because it does not focus on one math topic but rather on the importance of knowing and understanding numbers.  It is a classic tale of when we use math in our lives. 

In this story, the numbers in the town disappear.  There is no counting, addresses, telephone numbers or telling time.  No one can keep score, pay for things, measure or use the computer.  A thief has vacuumed up all of the numbers.  When all the numbers disappear, the people in the town realize how much their lives depend on numbers.
This story is super engaging and like other Loreen Leedy books, the illustrations are fantastic.  I tend to use this book in grades K-4 at the beginning and ending of the school year as a reminder about why numbers are important and why we need math.  This book caries a message similar to that of the Math Curse but for a younger audience. 

How do you get the message across to your students that number and math are an important part of life?  Please respond in the comments below!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Fun and Free iPad Apps: Multiples

 I love using the iPad with kids of all ages.  Today I want to share with you an app I have been using in grades 3-5.  It is made by Math Tappers, the same company that made find sums.  It is called Multiples.  When I heard about this app from a colleague and searched for it in the app store it did not come up.  I had to open safari, do a search for it using a search engine and then it took me to the app store.  When I posted about find sums, several people had trouble finding it in the app store as well so be prepared to do a liittle searching.

Like other apps by Math Tappers, the best part is how many options there are.  This allows me to differentiate the app to meet individual students' needs and to use it with a broader range of grades. It also keeps the app interesting and engaging to students because it changes just enough to keep them interested.

Here is the top part of the settings page.  The model setting can be apples (easier) or part whole (more challenging).  If you select the apples model, your students will see a model for each problem.  This will be an array/area model and is a great starting point for conceptual understanding.  Check out this book for more about using models to build conceptual understanding of multiplication!

Scroll down the options screen a bit and you will be able to select a focus factor, change the mode from multiplication to division and pick a range for the other factor.  All of this allows you to set the app so that is is just right for a student.

Here is a look at an apples setting with a focus factor of 6.  Notice how the student can see two groups of 6 and could use a variety of strategies to figure out the answer. 
Apples with a focus factor of 9
Apples set to division with a focus factor of 4
Part whole with a focus factor of 8
More part whole with a focus factor of 8

Part whole division

So far, I have used this app in grades 3-5.  I may end up using it in grade 2 as well because we will be working on arrays and basic multiplication ideas.  This app would complement the array work that is done in my grade 2 number puzzles quite well.  

What apps do you use for teaching/practicing multiplication?  Please respond in the comments below!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Monday Math Literatue Volume 43

If you missed last week's post about a great book for teaching area, perimeter and volume, you can check it out here.

This week's book is by Loreen Leedy who has several great math literature books including The Great Graph Contest.  

Seeing Symmetry


I love this book for introducing, practicing or reinforcing the idea of symmetry.  I talk about symmetry with kids as young as Kindergarten but have used this book in grades K-6.  It provides great illustrations of line or reflective symmetry as well as rotational symmetry.  The illustrations are wonderful and a wide variety of objects are shown.  The book includes activities to use as a follow up to reading the story as well.  I find this book is equally as effective as a book to go home with kids as it is for whole group discussion.  It is definitely one you want to make sure you have in your library or book boxes for kids to take home.  My favorite way to follow up reading this book is simple but effective.  I have kids look around the room or we go for a short walk and find objects with symmetry.  Quick and easy way to reinforce the concept?

Which Loreen Leedy book is your favorite?  Please respond in the comments below!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Fun and Free Computer Games: Factorize

Earlier this week, I blogged about a fun and free computer game for practicing factors and multiples.  Today I want to show you another fun and free online tool your students can use when learning or practicing factors.


This is a great online tool (not technically a game) that your students can use to model factors of a given number.  It works very well for kids just starting out with factors and is a great next step after an introduction to factors.  It is a great visual to support development of conceptual understanding. 

The tool will generate numbers (both prime and composite) for the student or they can choose their own number.  The choose your own number option is wonderful for students to use to find factors of numbers from a worksheet or other class or homework assignment.  

Here the student has found 2 rectangles for 45 and typed in two pairs of factors of 45.  Notice that the rectangle color matches the factor pairs.  

Here a student has found the one and only factor pair for 13.  A great question to ask after using this tool is how do you know a number is prime just by looking at the board.  (there is only room for one factor pair) 

Here a student has found 2 of the 4 rectangles needed to find all the factors of 24
Looking for more ideas for factors and multiples?  Here is a great teacher book for teaching all things multiplication and division! 

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Fun Free Computer Games: Factors and Multiples

After last weeks' review of You Can Count on Monsters, a great book about factors and prime factorization, I got looking for some more resources for students who need work on factors and multiples.  I found this fun and free computer game/video hybrid that works great! 

Bitesize Factors and Multiples 

This starts as a video and moves into several games.  The entire game/video takes about 10 minutes and if you have kids show you their computer when they get to the end, you will have a good idea of how well (or not well!) they did.  It starts by defining factor and giving some examples.  
A still shot from the video where it shows what a factor is. 

As part of the first game, students have to click on eggs that are factors of 12.  Their score goes up with each correct egg. 

The second game stop has students catching eggs as they fall from above.  They get points for each egg they catch in the basket and bonus points if they catch eggs that are factors of 21.

The next part of the video introduces multiples

The last game (and a student favorite) give you eggs on a conveyor belt.   You have to pick up the eggs that are multiples of a given number and throw them at the guy.  This game has several rounds with the multiples changing each time.  
The last screen is where the movie/games ends and it shows your score.  The score stays on the screen and is a great way to check in and see how kids did.  

If you are looking for an easy way to introduce factors to kids, check out this post!

For an engaging and easy way to give your students more practice with these important ideas, check out this print and play math center

Monday, May 5, 2014

Monday Math Literature Volume 42

If you missed last week's post about a great book for teaching factors and multiples, you can check it out here!

This is a great measurement book by David Adler who has written over 200 kids books.  I have written about some of my other favorite measurement books before but this is one is also a student favorite.  It is bright, colorful, fun and has a great monster theme.  The monsters are going to the opening of a new movie and work together to measure the area, perimeter and volume of the set, screen, popcorn box and more. High interest for kids and usable in grades 3-6. 

An entertaining read and a great way to squeeze more math into your day.

What are your favorite books for measurement concepts?