Friday, September 13, 2019

5 Math Terms to Add to Your Classroom Word Wall

How do you your students practice math vocabulary?

Do your students practice using math terms?


This month's topic is how to use math vocabulary to increase student growth. Last week's blog "3 Strategies for Practicing Math Vocabulary" was about ways to increase math vocabulary practice in your classroom today.  This week we take a look at word walls. Do you have a classroom word wall?

5 Math Terms to Add to Your Classroom Word Wall

What is a math word wall? 

A word wall is a wall that displays high frequency math terms (words that you often use in text, talk, or visuals). Word walls are an important part of the math classroom. They reinforce the correct spelling of math terms, help display terms for writing and talking about math, and show connections between terms.

What makes a word wall successful?


A word wall's success hinges on three things. 

  • Collaboration
  • Daily Use
  • Student Created
Students need to collaborate as a class to make the word wall. This is a great mini lesson for the students to create definitions, pictures, and examples to add to the word wall. The best word walls are not static pictures created by a publisher or teacher. The best word walls are student created and interactive. When students take ownership of the classroom environment they thrive. They go from daily visitors in the teacher's room to active community members in a place of learning. Watch your students use the word wall daily in discussion, writing, and more.

5 Math Terms Every Word Wall Should Have

There are 5 words you want to include on your word wall to get started. The math terms you should add to your word wall are listed below. Consider adding these terms to your wall to help your students make math connections. 

Fraction, Greater Than, Less Than, Product, Sum

Absolute Value, Coordinate Plane, Equation, Integer, Ratio

Be intentional with your word wall. Watch your students take ownership and learn new words.  Download these five math terms and start your word wall today!

Free Math
Word Wall Terms

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    Sunday, September 8, 2019

    $100 Gift Card Giveaway September 2019


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    Friday, September 6, 2019

    3 Strategies for Practicing Math Vocabulary

    Do your students struggle with math?

    Do your students know their math vocabulary?



    3 Strategies For Practicing Math Vocabulary 


    Math is a language like English, French, or Spanish. There are key concepts in math that need to be explained and well defined. How do your students understand math vocabulary? Do you have them practice the terms? Here are three strategies to use with your students for practicing new math vocabulary words.


    1. Make an Interactive Math Word Wall. 

    What do you display on your classroom walls? Do your students create it or is it teacher made? Have your students create an Interactive Math Word Wall. Students will write the definitions and pictures for each word. Display their work on post-it notes beside or below the math word. Students will enjoy creating this word wall in your classroom. They will even ask if they can "cheat" and look at it during a quiz or test. Why do they ask this? It is a helpful reference for them to be reminded what the vocabulary word means. Math is a language that needs to be modeled and taught daily for comprehension.

    2. Make a Math Writing Center

    Do your students know how to write math? Do they need a scaffolded approach to using math word in context? Try using a Math Writing Center. When you do math centers or math workshops in your classroom have one center be writing math only. Students will work on writing sentences with important grade level math terms. This will help build students' math writing confidence. Students need to practice with a scaffolded approach. This is a great solution for students to learn how to write math terms in the appropriate context.


    3. Make a Vocabulary Notebook. 

    How do your students learn and record new vocabulary? Do your students make math vocabulary maps? Students will take ownership of their Math Vocabulary Notebook. Have students write 3-5 terms per week. Students will add new math vocabulary word maps to their notebooks every week. At the end of the year they will have completed the entire year's list of grade level vocabulary.

    Using math vocabulary notebooks is one way to practice vocabulary every week. Try a FREE math vocabulary map today!


    Free Math Vocabulary Cards

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      Thursday, August 29, 2019

      Middle School Math Curriculum Maps 2019-2020

      Where is your instruction going?

      Do you have a road map to guide your teaching?



      At the beginning of the year we look for direction. What do the students need to learn? When do you teach it? There is a solution. A curriculum map to lead instruction towards the finish line.

      Middle School Math Curriculum Maps


      How do you get from your house to the grocery store? A map. How do you know what your students need to learn? A map. We all need a math map to guide instruction. 


      What does a math curriculum map look like? 


      A curriculum map shows what is taught in a grade level week by week. It can also be drawn out month by month or give a year overview.  A yearlong pacing guide gives a look at what should be taught in a 10-month school year. Quarterly content checklists give purpose and drive to continue instruction. 

      A Curriculum Map Should Include: 
      ✔How to Plan the Math

      ✔Quarterly Sequence of CCSS Aligned

      ✔Weekly Sequence Checklist
      ✔1-Year Calendar Pacing Guide

      ✔Big Ideas to Review

      ✔Quarterly Activities and Pacing

      ✔1-Year Planning Calendar



      Map Out Your Year



      There are certain areas of math content that should be well planned for. Know which areas will be assessed on your end of course exam. Keep your focus on teaching those specific math concepts well. Plan extra days in your math curriculum schedule for those units. Prepare to have more activities to help students master the key math skills.

      Plan For Your Students



      There are many different ways to teach math. Students can learn with notes, games, math stations, task cards, or practice with a card sort activity. Try different activities with different classes to see how best they learn and master the skills. Remember to keep your focus on the students. The best curriculum is student centered!



      Free Math Grades 6-8 Curriculum Checklist

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        Tuesday, August 27, 2019

        Middle School Math Card Sorts - Grade 6

        Do you want your students to deepen their understanding? 

        What are your students struggling with in math?


        Getting students from struggling to mastery doesn't happen over night. Growing their understanding is a process. Card sorts are a great activity to get your students thinking about the why's and how's of the math. Students make sense of word problems and the steps to solve them.    


        Middle School Math Card Sorts


        Having students work with partners on card sort activities helps create math talk. When students are verbal about math, they are better able to sort through their understanding and draw a conclusion. The card sort picture above is of an sixth grade sort called Integer Cut and Paste Activity. Students start with a problem and work through all the information provided. The goal is to get students to find and solve integer problems. The process in getting there is broken down into manageable scaffolded steps for students. Students have to find the opposite of the integer in the word problem. Students then create a number line to show the value of the integers. Each card sort activity goes through the process of math discovery to mastery. The lesson units are intended to help you assess how well students are able to understand each grade level standard. 

        Included in each lesson are:


        • Directions, grade level common core standards, and mathematical practices

        • Formative assessment (pre-test) task

        • Card sort activity with concept development 

        • Extension activity for students to deepen their understanding

        • Summative assessment (post-test) task

        • Answer keys for all the assessments and activities

        Get your students thinking and mastering more math concepts this year. Engage your students in a math sort to deepen their understanding. Students can work independently alone or in groups to accomplish the tasks. Watch as your students go from struggling to mastery of math. 

        Would you like to try a math card sort activity with your students? Try one today!

        Get a FREE math card sort!

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