I am currently on vacation with my family in beautiful Colorado Springs, CO. I have been spending some time with my awesome niece and nephews (two are in high school, one is in middle school, and the youngest is in elementary school). While I try to turn off the teacher mode around them, it does sometimes comes out. They were talking about school, and the subject of math came up. Disregarding the age differences, each one has different feelings about math. One would rather eat worms than work on math while another enjoys their advanced math class.
It got me thinking about some of my favorite math resources. It’s no secret amongst my team that I love to teach math. I am really passionate about that subject. I really enjoy making it fun for my students! I believe that the more they see the usefulness out of it, the more they will enjoy it. I thought I would share a few of my favorite math websites.
Grand Prix Multiplication – This is one of my favorite games for practicing multiplication. Students in my classroom are able to race their fellow classmates or kids from around the world. They have to quickly answer multiplication facts. There is even a display board that shows top times. For student safety, students do not use any personal information for a screen name. This game is hosted on a site called Arcademic Skill Builders. I really enjoy the entire site. There are math activities for grades K-12, as well as activities that focus on other subject areas as well.
The Factor Game - This game was a huge hit in our classroom this past school year. Students start out by using a grid that displays the numbers 1 – 30. Student A chooses a number that has to have at least one factor available on the board (ex: 27). Student A receives 27 points. Student B gets to choose all of the numbers that are factors of 27 that haven’t been chosen yet (so, Student B would get the numbers 1, 3, and 9. They would not receive 27, because Student A already chose that number). Student B receives those points (9+3+1 = 13 points). Play continues with Student B choosing a number. Once a number has been chosen, you cannot choose that number throughout the rest of the game. You can lose your turn if you choose a number that doesn’t have any available factors. Also, if you forget to choose a factor, you do not get those points.The student with the most points at the end of the game wins. We set up a championship bracket this year where students would play this game, tournament-style. It was a huge success, and a great way to practice looking for factors!
I really enjoy the entire Illuminations website. It is run by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. You can search by grade level and find appropriate activities for your students. They also include lesson plan ideas, online activities, and other resources.
Free Rice – This one has gone around our school. Students can practice multiplication or basic math fact problems. For each correct answer, the Free Rice program donates 10 grains of rice to the World Hunger Program. It’s a great way to practice your math and do something good for others! You can also choose from other subject areas as well.
Set – This is a website designed off of a popular card game in my classroom. Students look for three cards that are either all the same or all different. Kids have a great time looking for the patterns and using reasoning to make their choices! I really like giving logic puzzles as an option to students for when they finish their work. I believe they promote critical thinking.
24 – This one is also adapted off of a card game that I play with kids in my classroom. Students get four cards. They can use addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division, or any combination, but the total at the end must equal 24. They also must use each card.
These are a few of my favorite math resources to use in the classroom. I am lucky in the fact that I have a computer for every two students in my classroom, so I know that this may be difficult without these resources. However, many of these games can be adapted or purchased so they can be used without computers. What are some of your favorite math websites?
This post was originally published here and submitted by its author, Kelly Pfadenhauer, a fourth grade teacher.