March 18, 2021

Math Game Time

Math games can help students practice basic facts and other skills throughout the school year. Math game time can be a time set aside on a Friday or during learning stations. 



One easy game to set up during math stations or on math game day is a bump game. Bump games are easy to make, easy to set up, and easy to play!

Here is an example of an Easter theme bump game:

Materials for Bump Games:

A printable game board for each pair of students

10 - 15 chips or math cubes for each student (Partners will need different colors.)

Pair of dice

Directions for 2 Players:

Players take turns rolling the 2 dice and multiplying the numbers.

If the product is not occupied, the player places a chip on the product.

If the product is already occupied by the player's own chip, the player stacks a chip. 

If the product is occupied by the opponent's chip, the player bumps it off and replaces it with their own.

If the player rolls a product that is occupied by the opponent's stacked chips, the player loses their turn as stacked chips may not be bumped.

The player that plays all chips first is the winner!

Making a Bump Game:

Bump game boards are easy to make!

Start with a background or some graphics of the desired theme such as a holiday, space, carnival, etc. 

Create 18 spots for these numbers: 2, 4, 6, 8, 9 10, 12, 14, 15, 16, 18, 20, 24, 25, 28, 30, 32, 36

Print and play!

For a more challenging game, use 10 or 12 sided dice and adjust the products on the game board accordingly.

Pressed for time? Here is the link to the Easter Multiplication Bump Game pictured above:

Easter Multiplication Bump Game

Once students learn how to play, challenge them to create their own game board either by hand or on a computer. Give students time to partner up and try out their games! 


March 4, 2021

6 Formative Assessments You Can Use Today

Formative assessments give students a chance to show where they are in their learning. Teachers can use the information provided on formative assessments to plan instruction, form groups, or initiate remediation. Formative assessments don't have to be fancy or take a lot of time to plan, and there are many options.


 Here are a few examples of formative assessments that are easy to implement and adapt to different grade levels and subject areas:

1. 60 Second Summary

After instruction, give students 60 seconds to write as much as they can about the topic. This can be on a large index card, sheet of paper, or digitally if you prefer. Read through students' responses to check for understanding. Make note of any area of instruction that may need clarifying or reteaching.

2. Draw A Picture

Students of all ages will enjoy drawing a picture to show what they have learned. The picture can be drawn on an unlined index card or a blank sheet of paper. Encourage students to label their pictures and use descriptions as needed. Check for understanding and perhaps invite a few students to share their pictures.

3. Exit Tickets

Exit tickets come in many varieties and can be general or specific to a particular lesson. A simple exit ticket would be to have students respond to a question during or at the end of a lesson using a sticky note. Students write their responses and stick the note on the board or on a prepared chart. Printable exit tickets provide variety. They can be used at the end of a lesson and collected or used as a ticket out the door. Students love these sports theme exit tickets that can be used with just about any subject area!

exit-tickets

Or perhaps your kids prefer to be rock stars!


4. Make A Connection

Research shows that we learn new information by connecting it to what we already know. Ask students to respond to "This reminds me of...." They can be encouraged to relate the lesson to an experience that they have had, a book or article they have read, a person that they know, or something that has occurred in the world. 

5. Hand Signals

Students raise up fingers to indicate understanding. This is perhaps the quickest way to assess students' understanding. Simply ask the class how they feel they are doing with a topic and let them respond. These charts go from 1 to 5. Gotta love it when the students hold up 10 fingers to let you know they feel so confident that they are off the charts!

6. 3 - 2 - 1 Exit Slips

These exit slips are a bit more specific. You can make the numbers represent whatever you wish, but here are some common ones for students to list:

3 things you learned, or 3 new concepts

2 questions you still have, or 2 connections you have made, or 2 new words or phrases you have learned

1 opinion you have, or a picture that shows your understanding


Formative assessments are quick, easy, and useful!