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The Length of a School Year Math Activity

For all you poor teachers (like me) who are still in school (9 days left and definitely counting down), or for all of you super-organized teachers who are already stockpiling activities for next year, here is a great math activity to keep your kiddies busy during those last few days.  I adapted this activity from a Scholastic book I picked up for $1.00 during their fantastic sale - see, that $1 has already paid off!  I think the book was Real-Life Math Problems.  What makes this activity so great is that it can be adapted for any grade - and differentiated to match students' abilities.  I introduced the activity to the students, then had them come up with the different problems to solve.
Here is the chart we came up with in class - I apologize for the "roughness" - it was definitely a work in progress.  We have 188 instructional days (notice I had to change the number ... I over-estimated a bit - it's felt like a long year).  When we were done coming up with problems, I paired the students up and they began solving all the questions.  When each pair finished, I checked their work and assigned them one particular problem to solve (this is where the differentiation takes place).  Each pair was given a large bubble to write their problem and solution on.  If a group finished early, I had them complete another bubble with the problem the pair had come up with on their own.  When everyone was finished, we posted our results on a bulletin board in our nutrition area (like a mini cafeteria).  It has been so fun listening to the conversations students not in our class have had while reading the bulletin board.  My favourite conversation snippet centred around a group of students discussing how much toilet paper they have used at school this year.  Not your typical lunch-time conversation!

On a personal note, it was my middle daughter's first dance recital today.  They danced to "Daddy's Little Girl" and half way through the routine, the daddies joined them on stage.  It was so incredibly cute, and I must admit, it brought a tear to this proud mommy's eye.  How sweet!!!  To the right are all three of my little girls dressed for the show.  I'm one lucky mama!

Happy Father's Day to my wonderful hubby and all those fantastic dads out there!  I hope you all enjoy your day.  I have promised my husband I won't be on the computer all day, but with my report cards due tomorrow, I'm not sure I'll be able to keep that promise.


  1. 9 days is nothing! Try double that! Yes, double!

  2. Oh my goodness - and I thought June 30th was bad. You win! (although I'm not sure it's much of a prize) ;)

  3. Beautiful little girls! Katie was such a beautiful little ballerina yesterday. I must admit that it brought a tear to my eye too!

  4. Your little dancer is adorable. My ballerina is now 14...sigh...

  5. Thanks, ladies. Lisa - I hope my little one keeps it up - I danced until I was 17, and would love to see her continue.

  6. This is WONDERFUL! So glad you posted at Math Monday! Here's one for your students... Our local kids are in school 161 days due to budget cuts. How many more days are you in school? ;)


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