Happy Day 2 of Fall Break to me! Today I cleaned out the garage…loaded stuff into the attic…did the laundry…made a bank deposit…finished a new common core creation…started another creation and got halfway finished with it AND have a third creation about 75% finished. And this is my vacation! SHEW! Oh yeah…I also loaded a bale of hay and corn stalks into my tiny munchkin mobile. Ain’t nothing like cramming hay into the backseat of the zoom zoom Yaris!

I have had a tremendous response to my posts about my instruction and how I do things in my classroom, so I figure I will continue that!

Today I want to share part of our math instruction. We use the balanced math framework. If you’re not familiar with that it has four components: mental math, math review, skill/concept lesson and closure. Today I am going to focus on the mental math and math review components.

Each of these lasts about 3-4 minutes. Yep. 3-4 minutes. It’s that quick. They are done every single day so it’s just a few minutes, but it happens daily so the exposure adds up.

Let’s talk about mental math. This is just what it implies. It’s mental (no…not the mental like Mr. Greg mental…) so it’s done in your head and done quickly. So, you know I can’t really follow the rules…and since kindergarten is it’s own world, we do use our fingers sometimes for mental math. (No…really…it’s OK…the balanced math police won’t get us….I hope…)

So, I know you’re asking..what do you do for mental math?! Well I am going to share some of our mental math activities with you!

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## 26 comments

Every day we do math review of the numbers 1-10. We show fingers, count, count on, name the number, etc. It is fast paced and fun, and the kiddos love it! katienussbaum87@gmail.com

I use whole group math quick lesson review. We draw a number card and identify it, count on and back, show on our fingers, pick the card that shows the amount on our fingers, and match dots/numeral/word. brown.mariann@yahoo.com

Love your mental math! We do so many of the same things! We also do what number comes before or after a given number, counting around the room, visual cluster cards (subitizing) and eventually addition and subtraction fact ladders (they give the answer orally).

Karyn

Kideducator@comcast.net

I love your post about how you use mental math in your class daily. I am going to use concept. Thanks for sharing.

I show my students a dot card. I count to 3 in my head. They have to think what the number is. I say “show.” and everyone holds up the amount with their fingers. We talk about the different finger combinations that can be made for the number. (Ex. 5 on the right and 2 on the left make 7, 3 on the right and 4 on the left make seven too.)

Katrina

lessonplansandlollipops@gmail.com

We do Sprints from Eureka Math (commoncore.org). Each kid gets a page full of number bonds for making a specific number, for example making eight. On one part of the number bond, the number is already given. Students have to fill in the missing part. They get ninety seconds to do as many as they can. We check their work quickly, then do it again on the back to see if they can do more the second time. They love this and they're getting so fluent! I've never had a class be so fluent in math before and I think it's owed to Eureka Math!

jessica.rollins@boone.kyschools.us

We do Sprints from Eureka Math (commoncore.org). Each kid gets a page full of number bonds for making a specific number, for example making eight. On one part of the number bond, the number is already given. Students have to fill in the missing part. They get ninety seconds to do as many as they can. We check their work quickly, then do it again on the back to see if they can do more the second time. They love this and they're getting so fluent! I've never had a class be so fluent in math before and I think it's owed to Eureka Math!

We do Sprints from Eureka Math (commoncore.org). Each kid gets a page full of number bonds for making a specific number, for example making eight. On one part of the number bond, the number is already given. Students have to fill in the missing part. They get ninety seconds to do as many as they can. We check their work quickly, then do it again on the back to see if they can do more the second time. They love this and they're getting so fluent! I've never had a class be so fluent in math before and I think it's owed to Eureka Math!

Hi Greg,

I've just recently discovered your blog and I am huge fan of yours! Thanks for sharing so many great ideas and resources!

To review number concepts, I use the Number of the Day routine. I usually try to align the number with the date..so November is a great time to begin with the number ONE! We make some basic anchor charts for numbers 1-10–discussing what we know about that number in very concrete ways: I have ONE nose, a unicycle has ONE wheel, etc. As time progresses we build the number on a ten frame on the smart board (infinitely clone a thematic picture and pop it into the ten frames). Eventually the kiddos start making up number sentences for how to make that number–it seems like a natural progression moving from concrete to more abstract thinking across the year.

I'm definitely going to incorporate some of your mental math ideas! Thanks 🙂

Jessica Jackson

Asheville, NC

jessicajackson360@gmail.com

Thanks Greg for the powerpoint, looking forward to using that with my K4 students. We will start with numbers to 10 and then later in the year, use the teens. We are counting the days of school and so we do mental math on the smartboard with a ten frame to see the days number and using the one's of the number of the day to configure how that would look before we place it on the 10 frame. That can be a hefty expectation for the 4 year olds but we too move through it quickly forming the number on our hands and then using the 10 frame to reflect what we did. Thanks for the additional ideas you presented, I hope to use some of these on a daily basis.

sgaudynski@gmail.com

Thanks for the power point! Love it! We play a game called “guess my digit” or “guess my number.” I put number cards in a pocket chart and hide another picture behind one of the numbers. The kids guess my number until they find the hidden picture! They love it!

-Andrea

alwayskindergarten@gmail.com

I sing a “One Little, Two Little” song each season (apple, pumpkin, Indian, pilgrim, etc.) to practice counting from 1 to 10 and then from 10 to 1. It also helps with the connection of how many fingers without counting them. Love your ideas too and will have to include them.

Carla

bcc_carla@yahoo.com

Hi, for my mental math/counting review each day we sing Dr. Jean's count and move song( which they love and like to be silly with) – it's a great review of counting AND following directions because they really have to listen to the next step to do their counting. Then I call out numbers (sometimes I feel like The count from sesame street) and they look for that many of an item in the classroom. For example ” two, the number two… and someone volunteers to find two of the same thing. It's fun and it gets them moving too!

Susan

susie3337@gmail.com

Well, next week we get out first vowel (A) so we'll start building words and this would be the perfect complement to that study 🙂 Thanks so much for all you share. I have used many of your ideas and love the math review. We'll be using your power point on number recognition! Thanks again. Becky albums4u@skybeam.com

We use a lot of Mark Pencil with “movies” by Mr. Harry for counting and other skills. I have compiled a lot of videos, songs etc. on a blog that I pull up every day for something. Let me know if you're interested and I'll send the address. Would love those CVC word builders! Becky albums4u@skybeam.com

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Love this! I scour yard sales for old Scrabble games, then take the tiles and throw the rest away. Cheaper than buying letter tiles at the teacher's store!

tonyalambert13@yahoo.com

Love you and your ideas so much! I read this before I went into work today and thought to myself – I am going to try this mental math with my kids! Boy to my surprise they were spot on and could answer all the questions! They LOVED it! We talked about what mental math was before we started. Our school adopted a math curriculum last year from Scott Foresman, and it stinks… I dislike it a lot. So I have been doing a lot of supplemental math to make sure we meet all of our exit outcomes. My grade level and I are working on a pacing guide tomorrow for math – any pointers would be amazing! You are incredible Greg! Keep on being you!!!

xoxo

Becca

rowen967@gmail.com

Great review ideas and love the mental math. Thanks for the review power point. This will be great for my kiddos. You always have such great ideas and thanks so much for sharing your classroom routines.

~Laura

luvarbon2@sbcglobal.net

Keep posting!!! You are an inspiration. I do quick math problems with my students. Either story problems out loud or quick ten frame flashes. They love the ten frame flash and it is a fun tool that I got from one of my fellow teachers.

Thanks!

Dena email: softball_3rd@hotmail.com

Guess my number – students wear a number on their head (the headbands from the game Headbandz work great) and the other students help them figure out their number by providing clues such as “Your number is 1 more than 5”, “Your number is 4+2”, etc.

a_urso@yahoo.com

I love everything. Do you sell or give away (I hope, I hope) your subitizing cards??

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Love your ideas. I do daily flash cards with ways to represent (number, word, objects, number bonds, tallies, missing number,etc.)