I have had a tremendous response to my posts about my instruction and how I do things in my classroom, so I figure I will continue that!
Today I want to share part of our math instruction. We use the balanced math framework. If you're not familiar with that it has four components: mental math, math review, skill/concept lesson and closure. Today I am going to focus on the mental math and math review components.
Each of these lasts about 3-4 minutes. Yep. 3-4 minutes. It's that quick. They are done every single day so it's just a few minutes, but it happens daily so the exposure adds up.
Let's talk about mental math. This is just what it implies. It's mental (no...not the mental like Mr. Greg mental...) so it's done in your head and done quickly. So, you know I can't really follow the rules...and since kindergarten is it's own world, we do use our fingers sometimes for mental math. (No...really...it's OK...the balanced math police won't get us....I hope...)
So, I know you're asking..what do you do for mental math?! Well I am going to share some of our mental math activities with you!
Tell me a number!
Count to 5
Count to 10
Count to 20
Subitizing (using ten frames and pictures of dots or dots and patterns)
Show me 4 fingers (or any number of fingers to 10)
Count on from a number
Count from a number to a number and stop (Count from 4 to 11)
Tell me a number that is greater than this number and less than this number (Tell me a number greater than 3 and less than 10)
Add (this is where fingers sometimes come into the picture)
Subtract (more fingers)
Count to 100
Count by 5
Count by 10
We do mental math immediately after we finish with calendar time. Each child gets a turn at the task and if they struggle, either I jump in and give them some guidance, or my favorite part, the 'staches jump in and help!
And mental math is even differentiated! Some 'staches count to 3 or 10 or 20 depending on what they need to practice. I might ask one 'stache to add to 1 plus 1 and another to add 4 plus 3. Mental math meets the student's needs!
After mental math is math review!
Math review is another fast paced 3-4 minute activity. Time for honesty. I pretty much do the same math review from day one.
Our math review is number recognition. True story. We work on that all year. At first, it's numbers to 10 and then numbers to 20. Every day. Why? I want them to have a solid foundation in number recognition!
I use a simple PowerPoint to review numbers. We do it whole group. Sometimes we take turns. I mix the numbers up to make sure they are always random (random like Mr. Greg). We fly through the numbers quickly. Most days I go through it twice.
Click the picture to download your free number recognition PowerPoint!
(Graphics courtesy of Goodness and Fun!)
Another review that we do frequently is shapes and colors. These are also PowerPoints that we go through quickly. Many days we will do numbers and shapes. Early on we do 2D shapes and then add the 3D shapes!
This constant review keeps the skills fresh in their minds and gives that solid foundation that will have benefits in more difficult math concepts later on!
Our calendar time also serves as a review time! To see more on our calendar time, CLICK HERE!
So there ya have our mental math and math review process!
Here is my newest Common Core Creation! This is one of my fave CVC word centers at the beginning of the year! This set features over 100 CVC word cards!
How about a give away? Leave a comment (and your email!) with a mental math or math review idea or strategy that you use in your classroom! We'll pick a winner tomorrow!