Sunday, March 15, 2015

Markers and Dice

It comes as no surprise to me that my students love to write with dry-erase markers. Everyone knows this, and this is why I am constantly needing to buy more. What I didn't realize is that allowing them to write with these markers makes any type of learning more fun. One day, I decided to let the kids DRAW ON THE TABLE. And you're thinking WHAT?! How can they do that? Well, it's actually no big deal. The marker wipes right off and then, just to clean it, I use a Clorox wipe at the end of the day and it's ready for the next day. So one day I told my students, "Go ahead, it's ok. Write this problem on the table and solve it." And they LOVED it. And kept asking for more. What were they doing? Double-digit addition problems. That's it. Now, I love adding and if you give me a problem, I want to solve it right away. But they cannot get enough! It's almost to the point where they don't want to do anything else during math time. They try to finish as fast as they can so they can draw on the table or the board. To make this activity even more exciting and independent, I found these dice:

Place Value Cubes

These are great dice because they have the place value right on them. The numbers go up to 9, not just up to 6 like regular dice, which is great when you want students to practice with carrying. So now I just give the students the tens and the ones dice, a marker, and some whiteboard space, and they are satisfied for the rest of math class. And I told them that if they kept getting correct answers, I would even add the Hundreds die! Needless to say, they worked extra hard after that to get that third die. I am so proud of how quickly they learned double and triple-digit addition and it pleases me even more that they enjoy it. Hopefully, by the end of the year we will be using the Thousands die!

Do you have any fun strategies for teaching addition? I would love to hear your ideas!

Michelle

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