Think Like A Kid

As a kid, I hated math! Just ask any of my teachers. Or my parents. Or my siblings. I hated it. I actually hated it so much that I would feel physically sick every morning at the bus stop because I feared my teacher would call on me and I would not know the answer. Some days I would actually get sick! This is how I always saw math:

How I see math word problems

Funny enough, it wasn’t until I began TEACHING math that I truly began to like it. Now it is one of my favorite subjects to teach. As corny as it sounds, I think my struggle to understand math as a child only helped me be a better math teacher today. Last year, I created LOTS of Common Core addition and subtraction resources to align with each of the eight standards in the Operations and Algebraic Thinking domain.

These activities helped me and my students TIME and TIME again last year. They were BIG lifesavers! I thought I’d share these resources with you all since I am getting them prepped for this new group of kiddos. I’m sure my students last year would agree that learning addition and subtraction would never have been as much fun without Addition Addy and Subtraction Subby.

I cannot WAIT to introduce my new group to these characters through these fun stories and crafts. My teaching philosophy has always been to think like a kid. I am constantly asking myself, “How can I make this relatable to my first graders?” or “How can I make this boring math lesson come to life?” These little characters really help do just that – bring learning to life! My kids referred to these guys all year long. They would say things like, “I think this is an Addition Addy problem because two groups are coming together.” I hope this new group finds these as helpful and fun!

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I also made these posters for my students to refer back to. I NEVER teach my students to refer SOLELY on key words, but more as a strategy for helping them solve problems. These will definitely come in handy again this year!

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Last year after my students learned all about Addition Addy and Subtraction Subby, we completed these crafts as a little review. They LOVED writing different number sentences! I know this upcoming group will enjoy making these guys too. image

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I hung these math wall cards and strategy posters in my classroom last year as I introduced these concepts and my students referred to them all year long. Thank goodness I laminated them last year. They are all ready to go! I just

need to hang them.

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In addition to the posters and stories, I also made activities to align with each standard. These were perfect for my math tubs! Each activity is labeled with the Common Core standard to help keep me somewhat sane and organized! Here’s a little breakdown of each of the activities included: For the activities below, students matched up the picture cards/dominoes with the correct number sentence. Then, they had to record and solve. I had my students complete these after we had solved many picture stories as a class. These definitely helped prepare my students for more difficult problems.

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These activities helped my students become experts at solving problems with three addends. These were super easy to prep but VERY helpful.

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Another class favorite was addition and subtraction bingo! After playing this as a whole group a time or two, I set this up at a station and let my kiddos go to town.

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These activities help students learn about the Commutative Property and Associative Property (Standard 3). I always start them out with concrete materials first, like cubes, and then go from there.

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Teaching students how to solve part/part/whole problems can be a daunting task. This is an excellent activity to help students master this skill.

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Here’s a little true/false sorting activity. I started out this lesson by asking students to think about things that are true/false in real life. Like, “The moon is made of cheese.” or “Pigs can fly.” Then, I made the connection to true/false math problems. This little mini-lesson helped tremendously.

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This true/false math game was a class favorite!

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When we began to relate counting to addition and subtraction, these fun games came in handy:

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A huge component of the Common Core is WORD PROBLEMS! This word problem packet was an awesome resource for my kiddos last year. I made a copy of the booklet for each student and had them pull these out as we were solving different kinds of word problems. They acted as great assessment tools. There are 23 word problems in all.

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These little addition and subtraction math fact fluency books came in handy too!

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I also made these Exit Passes for each standard. These quick assessments helped me see if my students got the “big picture.” They are nicely labeled with each standard.

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I documented all of my observations on this sheet. I’ve tried different ways of recording student observations, but this one worked the best for me. Super simple and easy! image Detailed directions for each activity can be found in my Math Attack packet found at my TPT shop! Click HERE to go grab this Common Core packet.

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