Blog

# Organizing Student Notebooks with Dividers

Today I’m sharing my newest step towards improved organization in the classroom: notebook divider tabs.  (I got the idea from a blog post by Sarah Carter and knew that I wanted to modify them to work for me in the upcoming year). I decided that this year I am going to make notes worth 2Read more about Organizing Student Notebooks with Dividers[…]

# Improving Number Sense with the Divisibility Rules

I decided to make divisibility my first lesson of the year for 7th grade next year for a couple of different reasons: it is a skill used in many different concepts throughout the year and it really helps promote overall number sense in students. The divisibility rules (hopefully) help students be less dependent on theirRead more about Improving Number Sense with the Divisibility Rules[…]

# Breaking Down 2 Step Equations

Today I’m writing about a simple idea that makes 2-step equations easy for kids – a box “trick”. Students obviously have already learned how to solve one-step equations before being introduced to two-step equations, so I introduce 2-step equations by giving students a simple one-step equation.  The only difference is that I use an indexRead more about Breaking Down 2 Step Equations[…]

# Hands-On Integer Operations (Part 3: Multiplication & Division)

Multiplying and dividing integers are, in my opinion, the hardest operations to teach to students and it took me a few years before I found a good way to have these operations make sense to students.  After I am confident that my students are comfortable adding and subtracting integers, I move on to the finalRead more about Hands-On Integer Operations (Part 3: Multiplication & Division)[…]

# Hands-On Integer Operations (Part 2: Subtracting Integers)

After I spend 2-3 days teaching integer addition (click here to read my post on adding integers) and am confident my students are comfortable with it, I move onto subtraction. I start by giving students two color counters again and put an easy question on the board for them to solve independently: -5 – (-2)Read more about Hands-On Integer Operations (Part 2: Subtracting Integers)[…]

# Hands-On Integer Operations (Part 1: Adding Integers)

Integer operations are truly a make or break middle school math concept.  Students who “get” integers will be much better off than students who don’t, in terms of their future math success.  That’s why I really take my time when teaching integers each year.  I’m breaking up my blog post on teaching integer operations intoRead more about Hands-On Integer Operations (Part 1: Adding Integers)[…]

# Ideas for Setting Up Math Notebooks

With all the buzz on interactive notebooks lately, I thought I’d share how I do notebooks in my math classes for people who are looking for an alternative to cutting and pasting foldables into a notebook. I have gone back and forth a few times between having my students use binders or notebooks, but forRead more about Ideas for Setting Up Math Notebooks[…]