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I started as a math teacher, and even though I've spent the last 9 years doing tech things, I still love a good math lesson. Here are the tools and ideas I love the most:
360° Math refers to the idea of teaching math in a classroom where students work on the walls. It keeps them up and out of their seats, gives them a chance for constant peer review, and gives the teacher instant, low-tech access to every student's work.
This resource bridges the gap between math problems and math puzzles. The questions here are open ended problems that let student demonstrate deep knowledge of math concepts and play with the properties of operations, equations, etc.
Directions: Make the largest (or smallest) expression by using the whole numbers 0-9 in the boxes below. Note: for 5th grade, remove the exponent to make it grade level appropriate.
GSP is like a drawing program designed to represent the underlying truths of geometry. For example, you don't draw a square in Geometer's Sketchpad; you construct it from perpendicular angles and equal-length sides. If you try to change something about the square, it will be constrained by that construction. It's great for bringing to life those polygon definitions, as well as transformations, the cartesian plane, measurements, and other concepts. Plus you can make some really cool math art!
This online learning platform for math is loved by teachers because it's very direct and breaks up concepts into detailed modules. It also acknowledges that problems within the same concept can have varied levels of difficulty, and track a student's "SmartScore" which represents "a dynamic measure of progress towards mastery."
Everyone has heard of Khan Academy at this point, but many teachers find it frustrating. It can be, since it is very student centered. KA is designed primarily for students to take charge of their own learning paths, rather than for teachers to assign and monitor students. Using it requires a real shift towards individualized learning! Still, it's free and a great resources for students!
Motion Math Games
These are my favorite math games. They are fast and fun, while having deep connections to underlying concepts. Unlike games that promote procedures (answer 2+3 quick to make your car move faster!), these activities help students understand place value, sums, multiplication, and fractions in visual and concrete ways.
This is a neat tool for providing instant feedback to students learning algebraic manipulations. It's great for kids who have issues with operations (including adding/subtracting negatives) because it let's them work with like terms, balancing equations, simplification, and more without getting caught up in addition or division mistakes. Key tip: make sure students slow down and think about the problems. They can get through it with lots of trial and error, but s
Desmos is a wonderful free, online graphing calculator for schools. You can set up a classroom and view your student work on a huge variety of activities.
One of the best is Marbleslides. Students have to use their knowledge of linear algebra and graphing to solve puzzles.