Math = Love: Multiplying Polynomials Egg Hunt

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Multiplying Polynomials Egg Hunt

It's quite a bit past Easter now, but you could still use this activity if you don't care about being relevant to a current holiday. :)

A few years ago, I picked up a bag of Easter eggs at a garage sale. I didn't know exactly what I planned on using them for, but I knew that I could make them into a math activity.

This year, after setting in my cabinet for multiple years, my egg collection finally made its debut.

Before students came in my classroom, I took a couple of minutes to hide the eggs around my classroom. I was pretty happy with some of my hiding places!

Each student was given a recording sheet to keep track of the work from each multiplying polynomial problem that they found in an egg. Yes, the eggs were filled with math problems instead of candy. Yes, I am that sort of teacher.

Here's the procedure I used for this activity:

1. Let the students know that we will be having an egg hunt.
2. Pass out the recording sheets.
3. Inform students of the rules. Mainly, they can only have one egg on their desk at a time.
4. Students race (in pairs) to locate an egg and bring it back to their desk.
5. Pairs work to multiply the polynomials inside their egg,  showing work on their recording sheet.
6. Pairs bring their work to be checked by the teacher. If the work is correct, students get a stamp. If work is incorrect, students must correct their work to earn a stamp.
7. Students re-hide the egg and find a new egg with a new problem to solve.
8. Repeat until all students have solved all of the problems OR time is up.

I did have to implement some rules as the day went on for appropriate hiding places. I had students wanting to hide eggs in drawers/cabinets. I had to clarify that eggs could only be hidden in places that were accessible without opening any doors or drawers. They also tried to stand on chairs to hide eggs, and I had to put a stop to that.

Even with these rules, I still had one egg that wasn't found until this past week!

My students really enjoyed this activity, and I look forward to practicing other skills with egg hunts in the future.

My garage sale eggs were looking pretty sad after a day of hunting. Many of the eggs were cracked and broken. So, I ended up picking up a few new bags of Easter eggs on the Easter clearance aisle this year.


  1. What a creative way to get students up and moving about! I'm not sure my Vietnamese students would be familiar with egg hunts, but then we have played Battleship, BINGO, Jeopardy, and done some "scavenger hunts" I'll have to think what I can do with my students once I move to Turkey to incorporate some culture into math class!

  2. This is awesome! If you didn't want to have the Easter egg vibe, there are containers with colorful lids sold in 3 or 4 packs, about 1 x 1 (maybe bigger), that I've seen at the dollar stores. They're meant for small snacks or possibly salad dressing. (??) That'd be a little bit of money but well worth it to break up an otherwise boring set of worksheet problems. I'm going back to pick up some eggs from the clearance rack at a craft store to do this. With 3 weeks left in the school year and testing done, keeping kids engaged and giving them a preview to help with the middle school to high school Algebra I transition is the name of the game.