These past few weeks we have been really adding to our problem solving toolbox. From identifying clue words in story problems that tell us which Math operation to use to identifying our own problem solving strategies, we are revisiting the various Math concepts in a meaningful and personal way. Not only are we reflecting on which strategies we tend to use the most, but also are practicing identifying the strategies of our peers in hopes of adding to our personal toolbox.
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In Math these past few weeks we have been working on understanding and relating perimeter and area! These two concepts can be quite confusing so as always we are learning multiple strategies and exploring the relation between the two along with applying our understanding of both to realworld situations! I am excited as this week we will really dive into how understanding area and perimeter can be FUN! Especially when it enables us to create accurate designs, blueprints, and maybe even ROBOTS! (Friday has a fun surprise to it this week!)
Problem Solving Friday is a chance for us to really apply ourselves and persevere through some tough Math problems. It also becomes an amazing display of collaboration and critical thinking and here is an example of such: These past few weeks we have been working to understand multiplication as repeated addition and equal groupings along with building our multiplication fluency and quick recall. This week we are exploring division and are building our understanding of the relationship between division and multiplication. This involves using fact families to write and solve our own math sentences along with using the distributive property of multiplication to solve for 2 digit multiplication problems. Fun stuff!
Test it out: How can you use our helpful numbers of 2, 5, and 10 to help you solve this multiplication problem? 14 x 8
Bar models also lead into algebra and understanding the relationship between addition and subtraction! I am excited at making what seems like a complicated subject (algebra) and presenting it in a way they can understand and see!
For Math this past week we have been focusing on Mental Math strategies. Through using Math Talks, we have practiced and shared the many paths to right answers. We also discussed when we used Mental Math outside of the classroom. Ranging from grocery shopping, to telling and thinking about time, we realized the broad range of situations and experiences we already had using Mental Math. My favorite was an example of using Mental Math when comparing or quickly guessing the size of fish caught on a fishing trip! Clever! A great way to continue to practice (and have your child demonstrate their thinking) is to present a multi number addition or subtraction problem and compare all the different ways we can quickly get to an answer. Compare which strategy works best for you to a friend or family member! It is fun to see all the different ways we see and solve Math problems.

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June 2015
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