Math is not a worksheet. My friend Stacy at Simpson’s Superstars is one of the best math teachers I know. Her Instagram (@simpsonsuperstars) is full of hands-on math strategies and ideas for teaching math. Her passion about math being hands-on is always inspiring me and pushing me to do more. So when we discovered Math Stackers, we knew they were a must-have tool for our classroom.
What Are Math Stackers?
Math Stackers are toys for kids and educational tools for teachers in the classroom. These toys help make math strategies concrete and real for our students. No more frustration with paper and pencil work. Now they can see and feel how two numbers equal 10. Or how many different ways there are to make 10. Math Stackers is a fun way to practice and understand hands-on math strategies.
How Do You Use Math Stackers In Your Classroom?
In our classroom, we use our Math Stackers to practice hands-on math strategies and higher-order thinking skills. If we’re practicing addition, students can use the Math Stackers to physically make and solve equations. We can make patterns, we can show ways to make 10 and we can work on number recognition and number order.
For number order, you can simply have students put the blocks in order. This helps with number recognition as well. You can then take it up a step and have them comparing numbers. Ask what they notice about the numbers (bigger, smaller, etc).
To practice addition or decomposing numbers, students can simply choose a number and find two numbers that equal that number. Here’s the beauty of MAth STackers: they’re self-correcting. If they’re using two numbers that equal the number, the towers are the same size! This is also a very concrete way to help students understand that an equation is equal on both sides!
Now, Mr. Greg, do students just guess which numbers and keep trying until they get it right? Oh sure they do’ They’re five and we know what 5-year-olds do! And that’s OK! But, here’s another cool aspect of Math Stackers: they are actually accurate measurement tools. Each block is divided into 1-inch sections. So the 6 block has 6 sections that are each 1 inch. So students can use these to measure or they can count the sections to figure out what number they need.
What Other Hands-on Math Strategies Can You Do With Math Stackers?
- number recognition
- 1-1 correspondence
- comparing and ordering
- writing numbers
- spatial reasoning
- addition & subtraction
For more on Math Stackers and to get your set, head over to their website! You can use the code SMORGIE to save $10 off each set (Early Learning, Combo or Elementary) or if your SCHOOL orders it’s $10 off each COMBO set!
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