As your students tackle math, here are a few sure-fire ways to help them learn… and to make the teaching of math more enjoyable for you:
1. As you move to deeper instruction in math, you need to keep parents up to date on the new methods you’re using. Use the video feature on your interactive white board to make a video using the new method and post it on your blog and email it home! Even better, video the students!
2. Want to increase the chances students will complete their homework? Try doing one or two examples in class before you send it home. Parents will be able to see how to do the problem and students will have increased confidence in their ability to do the work.
3. Package your manipulatives for maximum use! Think about what a pair of students will need on a regular basis and store them that way. This will lead to using them more often. For example, I keep my second grader’s place value disks with 15 ones, 15 tens, and 5 hundreds in a bag.
4. Showing manipulatives on your interactive white board is pictorial, not concrete! Make sure all students are actively involved by having them do the same activity at their desk.
5. Do manipulatives drive you crazy? Use rubber shelf liner as a manipulative mat to soften the noise and define their workspace. You can also put a large round tablecloth on the floor, divided into quarters, to give four more students room to work.