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Best of Works 4 Me: Mathematics

These teaching tips and strategies will help educators prepare activites, games, and lessons for K-12 math learners.

Found in: advice & support; math


Beach Ball Toss
This kinesthetic learning game will help young students better understand the physical makeup of the Earth. They’ll learn land-water ratio, the names of continents, and more – and have a ball doing it.

Bingo Math
Looking for a fun way to motivate your math learners? Combine your lesson with a childhood favorite game and see what happens!

Ms. Langenderfer put her own twist on the classic Concentration game. Students compete as teams while reviewing the entire year’s lessons, but in this game everybody wins.

Flyswatter Game
Here’s a fun math game to play inside, perfect for antsy students trapped indoors by bad weather. Slap the correct answer and watch your students get buzzed about math!

Place Value With Playing Cards
Here’s a fun math game played with ordinary decks of cards that teaches place value and differences.

Life Skills Math Activities

Banking Day
Ms. Bell’s classroom store doubles as a clever incentive program to encourage good behavior in addition to reinforcing math and money skills. Find out how she stocks and manages the store inventory, and how students balance their books.

Credit Card Debt Simulation
This in-depth activity impresses upon students the importance of using credit cards wisely. They learn to calculate late penalties, interest, and minimum payments, and along the way they discover the true cost of a pair of sneakers.

Math and Management
When it comes to classroom management, Ms. Fischer gets out a checkbook. No, not to write checks. See how her tip teachers her learners real world skills while encouraging responsibility.

Real Life Math
Ms. Bock believes it's important for children to see a practical application of what they learn in school, and this activity has been a winner for her. See how she instills in her learners that we really do use math every day.

Math Across the Curriculum

Integrated Pumpkin Activity
A creative teacher suggests some fun ways to celebrate and learn about Halloween with a multi-disciplinary unit of study. Find out how she uses pumpkins, Fibonacci, and the Legend of Sleepy Hollow, to throw the perfect Pumpkin Party!

Students Prepare a Thanksgiving Feast for Their Parents
Ms. Wilson’s project-based learning activity incorporates math activities, science, and social studies plus a field trip to the store. Kids have fun learning, and parents reap the rewards.

Fundraising Readathon
Ms. Arbogast's class needed funds for a field trip, so she incorporated that into a cross-curricular learning experience.

Graphing Gingerbread
Ms. Harsh's kindergartners get a "sweet" cross-curricular lesson with this gingerbread tip. Sweetest of all, eating a snack is part of the activity!

Middle and High School Math Tips

Calculus Review Day
Preparing for big exams can be jarring for students and teachers alike. Ms. Traverso has a great set of tips that can help you plan for the best while you're prepping for the test!

Chemistry Moles
Here's a tip for chemistry teachers wanting to get their students interested in the measurement unit mole (6 x 1023 particles).

Math Song
This high school math teacher came up with a fun way for students to remember how to handle integer operations. Read about this tip and how it could be music to your ears.

Pascal's Triangle Enhances Number Sense
Mr. O'Brien uses Pascal's triangle on his bulletin board in a manner that creates enthusiasm and interest in his students. Read more about his tip and see if it can work for you!

Teaching Struggling Math Learners

Balloons R Us
Mr. Failor's tip helps engage lower-performing reading and math learners while they earn money.

Math Participation
Ms. Corbacioglu noticed her class participation was dominated by the students who love math, and that the other were just slumped in their seats. She solved that problem readily with her "Card System."

Ms. King says Pokemon cards can motivate reluctant math learners to take interest! Read about the tip that has her students ready to do more math while eliciting lots of volunteers ready to help.

Ms. Wimmer teaches struggling math students at different levels of skill. To meet each at his or her own level, she created "Top-It," a take-off of the card game "War." Mixing in dice, Uno cards, and dominoes, she creates a fun, effective math lesson!


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