Math = Love: 2018 Challenge Bulletin Board

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

2018 Challenge Bulletin Board

Tomorrow will be our first day back. It is a Professional Day, so I won't see my students until Friday. I'm not exactly sure how I feel about only having a one-day week with kids, but I guess we'll see how it goes. I am looking forward to the chance to kick off one of my annual traditions - the 2018 Challenge. It's a yearly task where students have to use the digits in the current year's date to make each number between one and one hundred. For example, 28 + 10 = 38. Or, 28 + 1 + 0! = 30. 

You can read about how I approached this challenge in previous years in my 2016 Challenge post and 2017 Challenge post. I originally learned about this task from Jeremy Denton who learned of the challenge from Mr. Collins. 

Each year, I print off my challenge on 11 x 17 cardstock (affiliate link). My first year, I hung the challenge on a bulletin board.

Last year, I used magnets to hang the challenge on my dry erase board.

My projector is dying and unreliable, so my dry erase board is prime real estate in my classroom at the moment. So, I decided to go back to using my bulletin board again this year.

I used my normal 11 x 17 templates that have spaces to write a solution and the name of the person that came up with the solution next to each number. I just had to update the instructions to say use the digits 2, 0, 1, and 8 instead of 2, 0, 1, and 7.

I decided to add visual reminders of which operations are allowed to spice up my bulletin board a bit.

Here's a close-up of the instructions:

Want to join in with your own students? I've uploaded the files here. They are formatted to print on 11 x 17 cardstock (affiliate link). If you only have access to letter-sized paper, you can print them poster-style through Adobe.

Click on "Poster." Then scale to 95% with a .001" overlap. This will let you print the entire bulletin board set on letter sized paper. You'll just have a bit more assembly to do!

Happy 2018!


  1. Looks like so much fun! My "wheels" are turning - I teach 2nd & 3rd graders, and am thinking about ways they could do this!

  2. I love this idea! It reminds of the "24" game. I immediately printed the 2018 Challenge out and posted it. We started on Friday morning. How many of the 1-100 numbers are usually claimed by your students? Are your students interested in a friendly competition? Thanks so much for every thing you have done to improve our profession!

  3. I've tried to download the files and it's giving me a message that they aren't there anymore. Will you please email them to me?

  4. I have a question that came up from my students. Do you allow rounding or do you have them get the exact answer to get on the board?

  5. Do you give extra credit for students who get the right answer?

  6. Do the students have to use ALL the digits? Did you do this challenge this year 2020 also? How did that effect your directions about not reusing digits?

    1. I make them use all the digits. I didn't do it in 2020 because I found it too hard to make many numbers myself. I did see some other teachers on twitter using the 2020 version with their students.