Saturday, December 1, 2012

January Addition Bump Game

Tonight I tweaked a few things on my December Bump game and came up with this one:

Players will use regular playing cards (Ace-9) in order to practice the harder addition facts.  I'm toying with the idea of using Uno cards:
     Skip cards would mean lose a turn.
     Draw two cards would mean the player must draw two more 
     cards, add those cards all up, and  cover the sum if possible.
     Wild cards would be any number the player chooses.

Click here if you'd like a copy of this Bump game.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

4 In a Row Math Gameboards

I'm always looking for fun ways to practice basic skills.  Here are two gameboards I made for practicing the addition facts.  We will be playing Four In a Row on these boards. 

For the first board, students will roll 2 dice and cover the sum. Once a sum is covered, it cannot be uncovered. The first player to get four spaces covered in a row is the winner.  The second game board follows the same principle, but we are using 3 dice instead.  If a player rolls "triple snake-eyes" (3 ones), he loses his turn.

I had to really think about these boards and revisit the probability knowledge tucked away behind some cobwebs in my brain.  Hopefully, they will work well for my class.

If you'd like to try these out, click either picture above.

***Graphics for the gameboards:***
Border from The 3AM teacher on TpT:(
Leaves from Math in the Middle:  (

Saturday, November 10, 2012

December Bump Game

Ok, it's official....I'm obsessed!  Laundry is piling up, dishes are out on the counters, my husband feels neglected.  That's because I keep reading about how to make some of these cute things on my own.  I love all this technology stuff!

So, tonight I decided to try to work with Powerpoint to create a Bump game for the easier addition facts.  Wow!! I've never done this before, and it is soooooo much easier for me than using Word.  Here's a peek at the finished product:


Isn't that clipart cute?  I bought it today at TpT.

Click here if you'd like your own copy of this game.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Gobbling Up Sight Words

I look at all of the cute products other teachers are making and posting on their blogs and TpT.  Money is tight, so I can't spend $10 here and $8 there.  Also, I just want to know how to do that!!  I've always created so many things for my room, so I decided tonight to give it a shot.

I found free turkey clipart on TpT.  I made a PowerPoint using that clipart and a cute font from Hello Literacy.  Here's how they turned out: 

I added some "POW!" cards so they can play POW!  They could also play Memory with a partner, be used as flashcards, and I think I'll make a few cards that say "Gobble!"  When a "Gobble!" card is drawn, that player gets to gobble up the other players' cards.  That might be a fun change.  

If you'd like a copy of any of these lists, just click below.

Pre-Primer List

Primer List

First Grade List

Second Grade List

The font is from

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Mapping Kevin Henkes' Books

We recently finished an author study of Kevin Henkes.  We enjoyed reading many of his books, and we focused on learning the story elements.  To focus on the setting of the story, we made maps of three of his stories.


For the book, Old Bear, we made a map together showing the places he went in his dream.  After reading Owen, we made another map together. This time, we started with Owen’s home.  Next, we added Mrs. Tweezer’s house and the fence separating their homes.  As we worked, students decided there must be a street that passes their homes, maybe a school, and a park perhaps?  We decided together that those places could be added to the maps as long as we could justify that they would make sense in Owen’s neighborhood.  They really enjoyed having the freedom to add a few things from their own imaginations.

Now the kids were ready to make their own maps.  This time, we used Henkes’ book, Little White Rabbit.  This is a simple story, without a lot of text. Most students were able to read it on their own after hearing it read aloud.  In this story, Little White Rabbit wonders about many things as he wanders through his neighborhood.  With such sparse text, students needed to add their own ideas to the maps.  They enjoyed the challenge, using titles for their maps such as “Bunnyville” and “Little Rabbit’s Imagination.”                   
 I’m not sure I’d stick with such simple stories for mapping the setting, but I really like the idea of integrating maps with reading (hits Common Core standards in Social Studies and Reading).  

Enthusiasm was high, and I will definitely use this idea as a center in the future.

Monday, November 5, 2012

November's Math Meeting on the Smartboard

Over the weekend, I worked on my new Math Meeting for the Smartboard.  We are transitioning to the Common Core and have noticed some gaps between first and second grade.  These skills may seem a bit low-level, but we'll increase the complexity as they are ready.  I'm disappointed I didn't introduce dimes and pennies in October as planned, but other things came up -- uh...the dreaded Third Grade Guarantee for which our district was unprepared.

So, I'm not quite where I'd like to be, but that's ok.

We try to do the Math Meeting activities several times a week, and I try to keep it as interactive as possible.  

The first page is just a reminder of what we are working on this month. 

We’ve already done a lot of skip counting below 100.  Now, we’ll move past 100 (up to 120 for first week or so).  The chart is there for help as needed.  The blank space is for me to write the counting sequences. I found this idea in Number Sense Routines by Jessica Shumway.  You can read about Count Around the Circle on p.57 of this excerpt of her book. I have a chart that has the numbers 101 to 200 to replace this one when we are ready for it. 


I found this Number of the Day freebie at TPT.  We are focusing on tens and ones and expanded form (and the dimes and pennies will also fit well there). 


As far as telling time goes, we’ve been working on telling time to the hour and half-hour, so I’m hoping they’ve all got that pretty well so we can move on to quarter hours and 5-minute increments.  They love Stop the Clock, and we’re introducing the clock from Mr. Nussbaum’s site.  They will get to choose which site to visit each day.


Our second grade goal is mastery of all 100 addition facts by semester time, so that will wrap up our meeting.  Students can choose from the four sites (Leon's Math Dojo, Sum Sense, Math Lines, Fruit Shoot Addition) to visit.  We enjoy all of these!

I’m still working on making visually appealing Smartboard files. It’s fun, but time-consuming!!  If you’d like this file, leave me a comment, and I’ll get it sent to you.  I’d love to see any you’ve made!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Math Coaching Time - Tens & Ones

Our district is fortunate to have two math coaches working in the district as part of Race to the Top.  I don't know much about Race to the Top, but I do know that having these coaches in our rooms can be quite beneficial to the teachers and students.

It's my turn to work with a coach.  She is a teacher I like and respect (and my daughters loved having her in 6th grade).  We meet each week to plan our lessons, and then we meet each day for a quick reflection of how things are going.  It's takes us a long time to plan each week, but I think it will pay off.

We are beginning two-digit addition, and both of us felt that the students needed a review of tens and ones concepts.  Here are some of the ideas we've been using:

  • How many ways can you make 42 using only 10s and 1s?  At first, the students were allowed to use addition and subtraction in their number sentences.  Responses were interesting:  
    • 10 + 10 - 10 + 1 + 1 + 1+ 1 + 1 -1 + 1 + 10 + 10 - 1 - 1 -1 = 32
    • 10 + 10 + 10 + 10 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 = 32

  • Next, the coach told students they could only use addition in their number sentences.  That proved more difficult for them at first.  Eventually, students found several ways, and we organized their responses into a chart:
                      Tens       Ones       Number Sentence
                       4             2           40 + 2 = 42
                       3            12           30 + 12 = 42
                       2            22          20 + 22 = 42
                       1             32          10 + 32 = 42
                       0            42           0 + 42 = 42

  • We used Monopoly money  to show numbers in different ways.  Students made the leap that 6 tens and 14 ones is 74 because 14 is made up of 1 ten and 4 ones.  They also were able to tell me that 4 tens and 27 ones is 67 because there were 4 tens and 2 tens (from 27) and 7 ones. 

  • We also used connecting cubes to build numbers and discussed regrouping the ones as tens when necessary.

  • We both are not fans of the traditional place-value models because students can't break apart or regroup using them.   However, since those models are probably what they will see on the OAA in third grade, we also use them to build numbers and model addition.
Whenever possible, I try to incorporate games into math so that students can practice skills in fun, engaging ways.  These games were hits in our room:

  • War  - Remove the face cards of decks of playing cards.  Students take turns drawing one card at a time.  When a card is chosen, the student must decide whether to place that card in the tens or ones column.  Once a card is placed in a column, it cannot be moved.  Whoever makes the largest number gets to keep the cards. 

  • Trash Can and 101 and Out are two games explained in this video.  I love 101 and Out because students are working with adding multiples of ten too.
When I get time, I will post pictures of what we've been doing.

I'm always looking for new ideas/games for basic place-value work.  What are your favorites?