Friday, August 3, 2012

Friday Friends

I am so excited that Randi gave me the opportunity to be a guest on her blog today!  My name is Tessa and I'm from Tales from Outside the Classroom.  My blog is mainly geared K-3 but I'm sorta all over the grades.    I am curriculum coordinator for my K-8 building.  I create items mostly for the teachers in my building so it ranges on grades depending on what they've asked me for.

I'm constantly trying to brainstorm how to keep repetitive activities engaging.  There are some things we just ask our students to do over and over again to build mastery and they can quickly get bored if we aren't changing the activities up.  Fact families were something that I've always wanted to try and spruce up.  I've seen worksheets and triangles that students practice with, but they can only look at the same triangle for so long before they get bored.  At the same time, I love having students practice fact families because it helps build their math fact fluency and helps them understand the relationship between addition and subtraction.  In comes my math fact family kites.
The kite has the numbers making up the fact, while the bows are the individual number sentences.  I really love the versatility of these kites.  My favorite use is to make them into an interactive bulletin board.  You mount the kite itself on the board.  You can use yarn, string, or fabric for the tail.  Then, as students work, the place the bow on the correct kite tail.  You can use velcro circles on the fabric and bows for easy addition and removal.  You can also use magnets to mount the kites onto a chalkboard or dry erase board.  You can get magnet tape for incredibly cheap and can put little magnets on the back of the bows.  Many classrooms are low on space and this is a great way to incorporate centers and a bulletin board in one.                            

 You can click on the picture above to get the kites for FREE from my TpT store.  If you'd rather download them from Teacher's Notebook you can do it here.

I'd love to hear what you think of these kites and how you decide to use them.  I hope to get more up in my stores very soon!  How do you keep your students engaged in math facts?  Do you have other ways you practice fact families?

Tessa Maguire is a former reading teacher, administrator, and differentiated instruction coach.  She currently is the Curriculum Coordinator at her school.  She spends her days helping her teachers find what works best for them and their students.  She blogs about the resources she finds and creates and she shares tips and strategies for effective instruction.  You can find out more information on her blog Tales from Outside the Classroom:

1 comment:

  1. I have a pocket chart that looks like a house and it comes with tons of flashcards with the three numbers in a "family". I tell them the big number is the dad, the middle number the mom and the little number is the baby. I have the answers turned around, and they know to take out their whiteboard each morning, draw the triangle, and the four number sentences (two addition and two subtraction). After a few minutes, I reveal the answers. They think it's a game. You can even award table points, etc for the table that is working the hardest or who you think has the most correct answers (versus who is done first)



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