Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Snowballs Everywhere!!

Yesterday we got a lot of snow!  I'm not that fond of the cold, but I LOVE snow!  There was a snow day and my kids spent all day in snowsuits sledding and rolling around in the snow.  Fun!

Anyway, I have snowballs on the brain.  I have been working on a snowball addition set over the last month.  I used part of it as my FB Frenzy product last weekend, but there is so much more.

I am really excited about these games and activities, because they get kids up and moving and having fun.  I used them with some of the kids I tutor and they were in love.  One of the activities is working on a snowball number line.  This allows students to put the numbers in the correct order, all the while discussing greater than/less than.  After the number line is built, it allows students to visually and kinesthetically add the numbers.  They are physically counting on and moving their bodies the appropriate number of spaces.

Here is our number line that we built together:

We used the anchor chart to demonstrate the addition sentence 5+3 and 3+5.  One strategy that we have been working on is counting on from the largest number.  We found the largest number with our "Snowy Kid" wand and then physically knocked on the largest number.  I've found that having students actually "knock" on the number helps to lock the number in their brain.  It adds a kinesthetic movement to the addition process.

After knocking on the largest number, we counted on and hopped forward 3 more spaces.  We talked about the differences in counting on from the largest number or using the smaller number.  The students concluded that both times they came up with the same answer, but they needed to "count on"  less spaces when they started with the largest number.

When using the class number line, you can have students use a personal number line and small wand to do the same thing from their seats.  This allows you to monitor all students' understanding of the concepts.
We found our answer!
Using personal number lines and small "snowy kids" wands.  The wand was laminated after I cut the hole in the middle.  This allows students to really focus in on each number.
Who doesn't love duck tape!?!

We had a "Snowball Fight" with our number lines and wands.  The snowball fight is "war".  We split the addition cards in half and each "threw out" a snowball.  Whoever had the largest sum got to keep the snowballs.  The winner was whoever had the most cards at the end of the specified time. 
This is a super easy game to play with whatever you have on hand.  You could even crumple up little pieces of paper with addition sums on them.  Students would "throw out" their snowball and whoever had the largest sum would win.  The person with the biggest pile of snowballs wins!
I had a "Snowball Fight" with my preschool aged daughter, using most of the same materials.  Instead of the addition cards, we used the snowball numbers.  We "threw out" our snowball and found our number on the number line.  She would find her number first and then decide if my number was greater than or less than her number.  She had a ball!
Hope everyone is having a wonderful week with or without snow :)
"Snowball Addition!"

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