Use the Date to Encourage More Math Thinking in
Middle and Elementary School
How Can You Use Math in Writing the Date?
In 2015, I started adding a little extra math into my classes, homeroom and last period (homeroom students again) - by using the date! I had done this years ago, but hadn't used the idea in a while, so I brought it back to my middle school math classroom in two ways
Math and the Date Method 1:
1) Use all the digits in the date to create an equation. The digits should stay in the same order they are in the date, and any operation signs can be added in between any digits. The equal sign can also be placed between any digits.
Digits can be used as exponents, as in the example shown, and you can add square roots signs if you can find a way to use them.
Math and the Date Method 2:
The other way I used the date was to write the date so students have to evaluate an expression for each number in the date.
It's been fun to see some students writing these in the corner of their notebooks during class! Others have asked to write their equations or expressions on the board during the last period of the day.
Five Benefits of Using Math Dates
What I love about these ideas is that they:
* Students can evaluate the expressions (using the bar as a
division sign - a student did this on his own one day!)
* If you happen to make a "mistake," students can find it and
6. EXTRA Math Benefits
Other fabulous benefits of using the Math Dates. You can:
Introduce Math Concepts
Where Can You Find Math Dates Created for You?
At this time, I post math dates at the beginning of every week on Instagram (always on Instagram) and Facebook (most weeks on FB), so if you'd like to use them, I hope you'll follow me on one of those platforms (if you aren't already).
I created Math Dates resources for you to use throughout the year - these have been published by individual months and as a year-long resource on TPT. I've added nearly a year of dates for upper elementary math as well.
To read next:
As I was thinking about school today, I was thinking about one of our next topics: equivalent expressions.
(CCSS.6.EE.A3: Apply the properties of operations to generate equivalent expressions. For example, apply the distributive property to the expression 3 (2 + x) to produce the equivalent expression 6 + 3x; apply the distributive property to the expression 24x + 18y to produce the equivalent expression 6 (4x + 3y); apply properties of operations to y + y + y to produce the equivalent expression 3y.)
Last year, I worked this concept in through the use of my daily math warm-ups, which brought the idea back time and again, and the students did well with it. This year, even though we will spend more time with direct instruction, I was thinking about other ways to use equivalent expressions, and I thought of using them for partnering cards!
Using the Partnering Cards
They're very easy to use - determine the number of pairs of needed for the number of students you have and pass out that number of cards. Give students to a few minutes to factor or distribute to find an expression equivalent to the one on their card, and then set them loose to find their partner for your activity. My students did a great job with them when we used them:-)
The cards can be used many times throughout the year as partnering cards, for a quick, random reinforcement, so laminating them is a great idea. You can also use them for a quick matching activity.
Grab for Free
You can download these for free, if you'd like. There are 6 pages, with 3 sets on each page, giving you 18 sets (36 students). The set is in the download twice - once with a background and once without.
I hope you can use them!
To Read Next: