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Friday, July 5, 2013

Math Technology and Thursday Throw Down Linkies!

I am linking up (a day late) with two awesome linky parties!  
 The amazing duo Kristin at  iTeach1:1 and Aylin from Learning to the Core are hosting a technology linky and this week's topic is math!  I loved exploring so many new ideas for reading technology last week!!  Also, my wonderful friend, Erin, from I'm Lovin Lit is hosting a new linky on the first Thursdays of each month.  It is called "Thursday Throw Down" and is all about ways to make learning interactive!

To fit in the theme of both linky parties, I am going to share a few ways I make math interactive using technology. :)
This year, I had ONE class iPad and started exploring QR codes and apps.  We had to really take turns but next year I will have three!!! MORE iPads and am super excited!  It was great to just get my feet wet a little this year with this "new to me" technology.  
Of course, the students loved using the iPad and QR codes! 
 I downloaded the FREE app, Qrafter, for my iPad.  It was so easy!

The QR activities I tried for math were (click on pictures for links).  The first two were free!

I also posted some more about QR codes here.

Another technological tool for math that I use is my SMART Board.  
I use it everyday and I barely know what I would do without it!
Of course, I couldn't find a good picture of my SMART board with a math activity on it, but this is a picture of my board being used in ELA.
We start every morning with our math meeting that I have posted on the SMART board before the students even walk in the room.  Students know that they come in, turn their homework in to the right baskets, sharpen pencils, and get started on their math meeting.  When they finish their math meeting, they may work on a math center (either independently or with a partner) or read.  I encourage them to complete a math center three times a week.  

My motto for math meeting is "Try Your Best Like It's A Test" because we go over the math meeting everyday together.  I am a firm believer that students need to learn to attack problems themselves without relying on help.  Then, when we go over the answers together, they can really learn from their mistakes.  If they don't "try", then how will they learn to correct what they did wrong?  Of course, I always have some students who test the waters at the beginning of the year and they leave some math meeting problems blank.  They learn quickly that this is not acceptable.  They must at least "try!".  I just tell them that they can make up the time they wasted by not trying at recess :).  

 Students arrive 7:40-7:55 and we go over the math meeting at 8:25.  This schedule works well for my pull outs who have resource room, OT, or counseling from 8:00-8:30.  They are missing the math meeting but at least it is not the new lesson.  The math meeting is comprised of many components by the end of the year (some are added as the year progresses):
  • Problem of the Day (any skill to be reviewed as a word problem)
  • Let's Practice (usually a new skill learned very recently)
  • Quick Thinking (some type of operations practice without a word problem)
  • Money
  • Time
  • Measurement (especially useful when preparing for the state science exam)
  • Number of the Day
The part that students love about math meeting is when it is their turn to be the math meeting helper!  The math meeting helper stands at the SMART board and records answers and uses tools from the SMART board to investigate answers (money interactive tools, polygons drawn with the Notebook tools, etc.).  The helper also calls on students to answer the different questions.  Most 4th graders love to have this power! :)  
The math meeting is so interactive and the students love it!  

I am not sure how math meeting will look as I continue to read Guided Math this summer and organize what my math block will look like.  However, I love how the math meeting forces the students to tackle problems daily independently!  Some problems are super easy and some are really challenging.  It is a good mix.  You can check out my math meeting files on TPT.  They are completely editable using Notebook Software if you have a SMART board.  I am always changing some problems on my files to match what the students need to work on but the files are a good starting point.  There are 190 files included.

I also plan to use this website next year. It is completely free and has a lot of fun math games.  The owner of the site is an elementary teacher and maintains this in his free time.  He is planning on adding a game a week this summer!  There are games for other subjects too.  Check out roomrecess.com!
From their site: RoomRecess.com is developed entirely by an elementary school teacher whose goal is to reinforce fundamental learning concepts in math, reading, spelling, language arts, and basic problem solving. Because our website is free, students do not have to sign up or hold an account with us. Children can simply load up an activity and learn while they play!
I had high hopes of getting to posting yesterday but was wiped out by the end of the day.  The rain did hold off for the most part for my daughter's parade.  We were there at 9:15 and it was 1:00 by the time we were in the car headed home.  Although it was a long walk, she had a blast performing and waving to everyone watching!
We are off to see Monster University on this rainy day.  Yay!!
 Don't forget to enter my Birthday/Blogiversary Giveaway!  Thanks for following, friends!!! :)


  1. Hi Holly!
    I just wanted you to know that I added your linky to my new weekly linky page on my blog! I LOVE Tried It Tuesday and I wanted other people (who may not already know) to find you! Thanks again!
    3 Teacher Chicks Weekly Linkies

  2. Hi Holly,
    I'm so excited for you that you are getting more iPads for your class! I can only imagine how many more techy things you will try out this year as a result of having more than 1. :) I'm telling you...we cannot get enough of QR codes in my room too-- love that they are such a fun way to practice basically any skill!
    Thanks so much for linking up with us!
    Learning to the Core

  3. I'm excited for you that you'll have more iPads this year! I'm sure that will make a huge difference, especially with using QR codes. I'm glad your daughter enjoyed her parade- she looks pretty adorable in her little outfit. Thanks for linking up!:)

    iTeach 1:1

  4. Wow, this is jam packed with info!! I am keeping my fingers (and toes) crossed for some tablets next year. Donors Choose here I come! I can't wait to use QR codes!

    And OMG I love your math meeting and I am headed to check out the smartboard file in your TpT store! This looks like something I may need to implement next year!!

    Your daughter looks adorable!! We saw Despicable Me 2 on Wednesday! We loved it. My daughter asked about Monster University so that may be the next on the list...I can't tell you the last time I saw an adult movie in the theater! ;O)

    Collaboration Cuties

  5. Here's a link to a skip-counting card game called Speed! I created it to help my daughter learn to multiply and my husband made an iPad version. Kids and adults love it. Maybe it would come in handy in your classroom. http://highhillhomeschool.blogspot.com/p/highhill-educational-supplies.html