Archive for the ‘Mathematics’ Category

  • Using Food to Teach Fractions: Math You Can Eat

    on Dec 11, 14 • in Instructional Strategies, Mathematics, Special Education • with Comments

    Teresa Image

    Like most students I teach, my students all got taught multiplying fractions the classic way. You multiply the numerator by the numerator and the denominator by the denominator. You either learn the method or you don’t (just like any other procedural method you learn in math). Many kids take to concrete methods of learning better than abstract methods, though–especially struggling learners. Using food to teach fractions, though? Brilliant. When I came across the brownie pan method while running my usual extensive internet search for concrete teaching methods, I got really excited. Not only could

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  • Accessible Math for Elementary Students AND their Parents

    on Nov 24, 14 • in Instruction&Curriculum, Mathematics • with Comments

    Blog

    I saw a post on Facebook this week about “Common Core Math.”  The idea of the post was if you add 4 apples and 5 oranges you will get an orange haired monkey.  Sigh!  There is not a perfect curriculum and I don’t believe we will ever know the motivation behind the standards, but they are asking our children to think.  The new math standards ask students to apply their knowledge and explain their thinking.  We are moving beyond rote memorization and following a method into deeper levels of knowledge.  Change is always hard. In my

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  • The Importance of Solidifying Basic Math Facts

    on Nov 7, 14 • in Featured, Instruction&Curriculum, Mathematics, Opinion • with Comments

    math

    Each Friday I run my class through timed math facts tests. I give my kids five minutes to get through 100 facts. I assess my first through sixth graders on addition and subtraction; my third through sixth grade on all the facts of multiplication and division and my first and second graders on each set of multiplication facts that we have covered thus far. I feel that students need to be able to stop second-guessing themselves on basic facts. Bringing in the spirit of competition by timing these tests enables my students to show them

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  • Getting Your Hands On Math: Multiplication

    on Oct 3, 14 • in Featured, Instruction&Curriculum, Mathematics • with Comments

    math

    I watched my three year-old, Monkey, coloring with colored pencils this morning. He was testing out the white pencil even though it was on white paper. I knew what was going to happen and I had to resist the urge to tell him not to do it. But I bit my tongue and watched him draw three little circles on the white paper. Slowly a look of confusion replaced the smile on his face as nothing showed up. I smiled and leaned over, “What color is that?” I asked pointing to the colored pencil. “White,&#

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  • Addition and Subtraction of Fractions

    on Sep 5, 14 • in Featured, Instruction&Curriculum, Instructional Strategies, Mathematics • with Comments

    mathematics

    For many topics in mathematics teaching the concept before the algorithm can lead to deeper learning. Teaching addition and subtraction of fractions with different denominators is one such topic. Using pattern blocks for this topic gives students a visual representation that they can translate to the algorithm for this topic. You may want to review equivalent fractions before proceeding. If you read my article on using pattern blocks to show equivalent fractions, you will have a reference point for this lesson. Remind students that the hexagon represents 1, the trapezoid ½, the rhombus ⅓, and

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