Prime Factorization Fun!

Sunday, September 3, 2017 No comments
I love to teach Prime Factorization! This year I have added a new activity into the mix! It was so much fun! The kids were engaged and worked through many rigorous problems to show their prime factorization skills. The activity is called Penny's Prime Factorization Predicament.  This is an escape room type activity that allowed students to work out several problems to decipher clues which led to other clues hidden all around the school. The students absolutely loved it! The first clue was a coloring clue that led the students to find clue 2 in the cafeteria.

The next clue was using exponents and multiplication to determine the composite number.  This led the students to decode a secret message to reveal the location of the next clue, the nurses office. 

Once they received the next clue from the nurse, the students saw a QR code that led them to a Google Form. The Google form had a series of prime factorization problems that the students worked through, but if they answered incorrectly, the students had to sit through a video that explained the steps of prime factorization before answering the question again. 

At the end of the form the students knew where to go to find the next clue.  Students received the next clue which contained puzzle pieces. Students properly matched up the puzzle pieces then rearranged the pieces to reveal a word which led them to the next clue. 

The students final clue was to research a publishing date on a famous children's book then find the prime factorization of that year. Students were allowed to research the book on their chromebooks. 

At the end, students received a congratulations letter from me :) 

I loved how engaged they were through out the entire activity! This was rigorous, relevant and exciting for the students and ME! If you would like to get your hands on this awesome activity click HERE! 

Before we spent the day on this activity, we practiced prime factorization by playing BINGO! 

You can also find the BINGO game HERE! 

Tune in next time when I tell about my Math Properties Activities! 

Peace, Love, Math

Top 5 Back to School Tips to Keep Your Sanity! Plus a Giveaway!

Monday, August 14, 2017 No comments
It is that time again, where we lose sleep over cute classrooms, professional development and engaging activities.  This will be my 15th year of teaching and I am still up early worrying about stuff that I need to do! I will be presenting to the new teachers at my school today and I have come up with 5 Back to School tips to KEEP YOUR SANITY!

1. Cute Classrooms take time, especially if you are a new teacher, and won't get paid until the end of September ( I remember this time )! Just do what you can do, to make it cute.  Don't get caught up in Instagram and Facebook photos of cute and perfect classrooms.  Those classrooms took time and years to put together.  Your students will love you based on the relationship you form with them, not because you have the cutest classroom ever. Super Tip- Use fabric for your bulletin boards.  The fabric wont fade and will last for years! Plus you can buy fabric that has an awesome theme, print or design to make your boards POP!

2.  You are NOT ALONE! The first couple of weeks are stressful for EVERYONE regardless of how long they have been teaching. Make sure to breathe, relax when you get home and remember you are not the only one who feels stress. Super Tip- Form a relationship with your team.  I am so lucky to work with my best friends! I could not imagine going through a school year without them.  We share our feelings and have each other's back.

3. Set expectations and rules the minute the students come into the class.  Once you have set those expectations and rules for the class, be consistent and vigilant. This will be stressful in the beginning and you will sound like a parrot, just repeating yourself, but after a month or two (may be a semester) the students will get it and then you will not have to repeat yourself anymore. Super Tip- Have students create the rules with you.  You can facilitate the discussion and lead students towards the rules you want. The students will have more buy in when they are a part of the process.

4. Everyday is a new day and learn from your mistakes! There will be days that your lesson doesn't go the way it was supposed to, or there are drills or assemblies in the middle of instruction or you spill coffee all over your cute outfit.  Those days suck but the good thing about those sucky days is that they are over the minute your head hits the pillow.  You wake up and guess what? It is a new day! Leave the mistakes behind you, learn from the mistakes and move forward.  Super Tip- Have this same belief about your students.  Kids have bad days too.  Don't hold a grudge.  Kids make mistakes so let them know that tomorrow is a new day and a clean slate.

5. Prepare in advance! Know your content and standards! If it is your first year, you may want to plan out what you want to say and do each day.  You never want to "wing it" because the kids will know and they will not be engaged.  You want to prepare and anticipate everything that can go wrong with an activity.  Super Tip- Find someone who does know their content and use them as a resource.

I am grateful to be a part of an amazing giveaway! So let's celebrate the start of the new school year by winning some FREE GIFT CARDS!!!! 3 winners will be chosen!

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I'm Moving On Up! (To Sixth Grade That Is :)

Thursday, June 22, 2017 No comments
Next year I will be looping to sixth grade math.  I am very excited about the change.  I will be headed back down to fifth after next year so please bare with me fellow fifth grade teachers, I will be back! I am looking forward to the challenge and can't wait to share my lessons and activities with you all! If you can, please forward my blog to your sixth grade teachers, I would love to collaborate! I am currently working on an escape room challenge for prime factorization and a complete learning cycle for teaching the properties of math operations.

To help celebrate all the wonderful things in life right now, #hellosummer, #hellosixthgrade, #hellovacay, I have joined in with other wonderful teachers to offer an amazing giveaway!

Who doesn't love a good giveaway?? The raffle begins Friday, June 23rd and ends at midnight on Saturday, July 1st. The more links you visit and follow the more chances you have to win! There are 2---$100 TpT Cards to win and 1---$50 TpT Card to win!

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In addition to the wonderful giveaway, we will be featuring products up to half off! Just go to TpT and search #hellosummer to find amazing deals! This hashtag sale will be from June 23rd through June 25th.

Thank you all for following Math Chick! I hope you continue to follow now that I am moving to 6th grade! Share the wealth with your fellow math teachers :)

Until next time,
Peace, Love, Math

Amazing Augmented Reality in the Classroom! (An Alternative to QR Codes)

Thursday, June 8, 2017 No comments
I am SUPER excited about this newest technology that I have integrated into my math class! I am sure you have seen Pokemon Go and how it uses Augmented Reality or AR to bring to life Pokemon in a game style platform.  What I have done is take this AR technology and I have made task cards that come to life!
For years, we have used QR codes to provide students with immediate feedback and as a way to integrate technology into the curriculum.  I wanted to find a new and fresh way to offer students that same feedback but by using a different platform. Here is where Aurasma hits the scene!

Aurasma is a free app that is available on android tablets as well as iPads.

Aurasma allows students to scan a picture or task card and then watch in real time, the picture or task card, come to life! Students are so excited to see this technology in action! I have made a sample pack of task cards that you can access HERE. You can try the task cards and technology for FREE! Once you see the technology in action, you may never want to go back to QR Codes! 

Here is a breakdown on how to use the cards! 
1. Download the free Aurasma App on the device you will be using.  

2. In order to make the task cards come to life, you must follow my Aurasma channel.  You can scan this QR Code to access and follow my channel or you can use this link

3. Once you have the app and have followed my channel, you are ready to access the content on my task cards. 

4. Open the app and start scanning the task cards much like a QR code. 

I love this technology! You could also use this in several ways! I personally have thought about "Student of the Week".  Students could scan a picture of the "Student of the Week" and it would reveal a short video that the student of the week has made about him/herself!  This same thing could be done with "Meet the Teacher Night".  Parents could scan a picture of the teacher and watch a video that tells all about the classroom and teacher. 
Students could create their own Aurasmas by taking a picture of their work and making it come to life by retelling a little bit about the content. 

Another AR or Augmented Realty app that is absolutely breathtaking is Quiver!  
Quiver is a free app available on iPads or android devices.  In order to use this technology, you will need to print off Quiver sheets to use.  There are several free Quiver sheets to use, and some sheets that cost money.  I printed off the free sheets and we used them in class at the end of the year.  Students absolutely loved them! To access the coloring sheets click here:

I would love to see more sheets become available on Quiver because it is AMAZING! Using the sheets you can see a volcano come to life, you can color a beetle and watch it come to life and then learn about the parts of an insect, you can color the world and then literally have the world at your fingertips! I wouldn't mind spending a little money in order to get quality sheets to use with this app. 

I am hooked on Augmented Reality in the classroom! I can't wait to find more ways to use the technology in class.  I would love to hear how you have used Augmented Reality in your classroom, feel free to share in the comments below. 

Peace, Love, Math-