Math = Love: Board Games, Numeracy, Document Cameras, and Traffic Lights

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Board Games, Numeracy, Document Cameras, and Traffic Lights

Quick post today because it's late and I'm exhausted from a full day of teaching and an evening at the Tulsa Math Teachers' Circle.  We had an ice cream social tonight with board games.  So fun!

Here's a pic of Shaun and me that someone posted to our facebook group:

We're obviously focusing super hard on figuring out how our game worked.  The game we were playing was called Love Letter (affiliate link).  It took us a few minutes to wrap our heads around, but I ended up really enjoying it.  With only two people playing, the rounds went rather quickly.  I'd definitely play it again.  Looking on Amazon, it seems like you can even get it themed in Batman and the Hobbit!  There's also a Santa version of the game (affiliate link) that's only $3.15!  


The real reason I started writing this blog post was to tell you about the exciting packages I got in the mail today.  A lovely blog reader sent me a book to read!

Building my students' numeracy skills is a major goal of mine, so I'm really looking forward to diving into Pam Harris' Building Powerful Numeracy book.  I've heard it recommended over and over and over in the MTBoS!

I also received a document camera from Ipevo.  I've had a document camera since I started teaching, but it has recently stopped working.  It wouldn't even power on!  Due to the school's budget cuts, I knew that it probably stood no chance of getting repaired or replaced any time soon.  Remember: I'm teaching at the school that forces all the teachers to leave by 4 p.m. to conserve electricity costs!

I remembered hearing a few years ago that Ipevo had a program where they gave teachers free document cameras.  It's actually called the Ipevo Wishpool.  This month, August, just happened to be another document camera giveaway.  They give away different products during different months.  (It's still August, so if you need a document camera for your classroom you could still win one!)  You do have to write a short essay explaining why you need it and how you will use it.  This month's gift is a VZ-1 HD VGA/USB Dual-Mode Document Camera (affiliate link).  It was super easy to set up.  I love that it takes up so much less desk space than my old SMART Technologies document camera!
Not everyone wins.  Shaun requested one from Ipevo the day after I did, and my wish was granted and his wasn't.  :(  But, I think it's definitely worth a try if you think you could use one in your classroom!  Mine came in the mail today, and I already have it set up.  I used it to demonstrate to my students how to play the Traffic Lights game from Nrich that Julie Morgan blogged about.

I had my students reuse the boards for Rainbow Logic for this activity.  But, I think I'll make up a dedicated set of boards for this activity in the future that has the rules printed on them!

My Math Concepts students (students not yet ready for Algebra 1) really struggled with understanding the rules of the Traffic Lights game.  But, my trig students got really, really into it.  We ended up setting up a quick bracket and having a Traffic Lights tournament!


  1. What are your plans for your math concepts class? Did you decide on a book?

  2. I love playing board games and have introduced my high school game club to a number of contemporary ones (inc. Batman Love Letter). I also recommend Qwixx as a sort of push your luck game that the kids and other math teachers enjoy at school. I am always trying to find ways to integrate games of some sort, but have not had much luck as of yet other than 31derful.

  3. Great Post Thanks For sharing very useful information about Traffic lights, also known as traffic signals, traffic lamps and traffic control signals, are signalling devices positioned at road intersections, pedestrian crossings, and other locations to control flows of traffic.