Math = Love: 2019

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Printable Powers of 2 to 9 Posters

To celebrate the last week of summer break, I've been doing a mix of relaxing and prepping my classroom for back to school. Yesterday, my focus was just getting my room clean. It's crazy to me how dirty and dusty a classroom can get over the summer!

Today, I finally started hanging up a few decorations. I'm excited that it's starting to look like a math classroom again!


Since sharing the pictures of my new posters on twitter/instagram this afternoon, several people have asked me to share the file for the powers posters. So I thought I should blog about them ASAP since so many other people are also in the midst of setting up their classrooms right now. By the way, if you're one of those people looking for decoration ideas, I recently updated my poster page on my blog with pictures of pretty much every poster I've created in the past 7 years. Check out my 7 years of math posters here.


These posters are going to replace the Perfect Square and Perfect Cube posters that I've had in my classroom the past few years. I love those posters, but I had so much trouble this past year keeping them stuck to the wall. My new school has cinder block walls, and they hate me. The best thing about these posters is that I can stick them to my cabinets!


I'm anticipating that these posters will be extremely helpful references to my Algebra 2 students as we tackle exponentials, logarithms, and radicals! 


The numbers 2 through 9 are printed on letter-sized paper. I printed mine on card stock and laminated them for extra durability.  


The tables of powers are printed on 11 x 17 cardstock (affiliate link). I print on this size paper by sending my print job directly to the copy machine where I have the 11 x 17 paper in the bypass tray.


If you don't have access to 11 x 17 paper or a copy machine with a bypass tray, you can change the PDF print settings under "Multiple" to print it on two pages. Then, you'll have to tape/glue them together.

You can download the files for these posters here

Monday, August 5, 2019

Monday Must Reads: Volume 61

It's Monday! For me, it's the last Monday of summer break. Next Monday, I report for our first PD Day of the year, and students start on that Thursday (August 15th). For weeks now, I've been trying to wrap my mind around the fact that this will be my 8th year in the classroom. Time really does fly when you're having the time of your life teaching math!

To help get me in the going back to school mood, I thought I'd compile one last summer volume of Monday Must Reads. Typically, I tend to post these a bit more frequently during the school year (since you all are sharing the amazing things you are doing in your classroom at a much higher frequency), so I look forward to that! Monday Must Reads is my attempt to capture the amazingness of math teachers on twitter by sharing the ideas that inspire me the most here on my blog. I hope that you take away at least a few ideas that you can use in your own classroom. And, hopefully you find a few new math teachers to follow on twitter as well!


Sharee Hebert shares a great real-world graph. Would your students know what happened in 2012? 

Image Source: https://twitter.com/MrsHebertMath/status/1157454538015563776
The Mathematical Association of America offers an intriguing introduction to topology through this rather creative map of the United States!


Image Source: https://twitter.com/maanow/status/1157352929856229376
SmirkyGraphs shares an interesting map/graph that caught my eye while scrolling through Twitter!


Image Source: https://twitter.com/SmirkyGraphs/status/1096576451682406400
Teaching percentages? You might want to use this picture from Mr. Foster as a conversation starter.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/drewfoster0/status/1157278863405268993
Also from Mr Foster, check out this exponent puzzle.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/drewfoster0/status/1153574453646938112
Amie Albrecht shares some great Quarter the Cross student work AND a card sort!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/nomad_penguin/status/1157201724878143489https://twitter.com/nomad_penguin/status/1157201724878143489
I've seen quite a few math lessons recently tackle the topic of gerrymandering. Check out this font from Ugly Gerry.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/UglyGerry/status/1153661354462588929
nhoiten has her students bury the phrase "I can't" at the beginning of the school year. I think that's awesome, and I love the resulting bulletin board!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/nhoiten/status/1157084175876448258
RupeleMx recently challenged his students in Mexico with the Square Pi Puzzle. I love how he also captured the other figures they ended up creating.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/rupeleMX/status/1156996481884332032
Meredith Webster shares a new poster she made for the hall of what mathematicians can look like. The center is a mirror!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/MsWebster5961/status/1154486034811371520
Emma Breese inspires with quadratic formula cupcakes!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/elbreese/status/995037335665414144
Familiar with ten frames? Check out these Hungarian 10-Boards shared by Bernie Westacott.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/berniewestacott/status/1147484770466746368
Have you ever seen so many lovely shapes made out of 30-60-90 right triangles? Thanks goosegirl for sharing your students' awesome work!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/feathersforthe/status/1151107121251049472
Claire Mulhern shares a way to connect the concept of a clock with a number line!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/CMulhernMaths/status/1139547740692594688
Amy Haskins shares a picture of a poster she received. Graphing your state could make for a very cool cross-curricular project!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/amy_haskins/status/1156577101996273666
Ms Hinchman keeps students organized with a jumbo table of contents for them to reference. How cool is this?!?

Image Source: https://twitter.com/Ms_Hinchman/status/595724042809778177
Ella Hereth's first day of school sneak peek has me so excited! I can't wait to hear all about it!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/MsHereth/status/1156254629220556801
These facts about sheep from the Australian Bureau of Statistics could make for some interesting word problems!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/ABSStats/status/1156051607680892928
Giant origami as part of a math lesson? Count me in! Check out this idea from ML.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/Lilinotlilly/status/1156047870631526400
Collette Hauge inspires with some giant hall graphing.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/MrsHowgeee/status/1156189154193149952
Mean deviation with water balloons sounds like a lesson from Teacher Tiliches that students will not soon forget.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/TeacherTiliches/status/1156199834648367104
Amanda Howard shares some WODBs she created for her Algebra 1 classes.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/MathHoward/status/1155455954164572171
Ed Southall's Instagram Archive of Geometric Puzzles is a thing of beauty!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/solvemymaths/status/1155552749125341185
S Leigh Nataro shares some WODBs she has created for AP Statistics.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/mathteacher24/status/1154589225519656962
Image Source: https://twitter.com/mathteacher24/status/1154592147368284167
Image Source: https://twitter.com/mathteacher24/status/1154592364322787329
David Butler shares a fun prime number fact.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/DavidKButlerUoA/status/1155202505216679936
David's tweets always push me to expand my own understanding of mathematics. This fraction talk he had with his daughter blew my mind.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/DavidKButlerUoA/status/1154166082208292866
Though, this 4-D Noughts and Crosses (Tic-Tac-Toe) might do my head in!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/DavidKButlerUoA/status/1151575587791572993
Teaching geometry? Druin created a large protractor printed on transparency paper to match the small protractors she provides students with (also printed on transparencies).

Image Source: https://twitter.com/druinok/status/1154194126130298882
And, check out Druin's awesome door decoration. I got to see it in person last week, and it is gorgeous!

Image Source: https://twitter.com/druinok/status/1156363623373185025
How would your students handle this area question from Sudeep?

Image Source: https://twitter.com/boss_maths/status/1153732258093817857
This Colorku game (affiliate link) looks like a great addition to any math classroom. Check out how Katie Johnson uses it.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/k8ielarkin/status/1153827872718462977
I LOVE this prompt from Melissa Copland to introduce domain restrictions.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/mpcopland/status/1139098145953144832
Need some "bad graphs" for your students to analyze? Look no further than Bill the Lizard's twitter account! Here's just one example.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/lizardbill/status/1132733563416264704
Dorsa Amir shares what is, by far, one of the worst pie charts I have ever seen.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/DorsaAmir/status/1118651866886361090
Micah Hudson suggests posting optical illusions in the hall for students to look at during passing periods.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/PHXMathMan7/status/656800412591345665

Derek Thompson points us toward an intriguing graph of how couples meet.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/DKThomp/status/1149701645070155776
Cara Daley shares a clever way to illustrate systems of inequalities using sheet protectors.

Image Source: https://twitter.com/DaleyMathTweets/status/1151944934808854530
Until next time, keep sharing your awesome ideas!

Monday, July 29, 2019

1-4-5 Square Challenge

In my last post, I shared the Square Pi Puzzle and mentioned that I was updating some older puzzles that have been long-time favorites of my students. Today, I want to share another updated puzzle, the 1-4-5 Square Challenge. I originally shared this puzzle on my blog in May 2015 which seems like an eternity ago now. Since then, I've changed classrooms three times, changed school buildings twice, changed school districts once, traveled internationally for the first time, got engaged, spent 20 weeks in Australia, got married, completed a masters program, went through the craziness of being a finalist for Oklahoma Teacher of the Year, moved to be closer to family and for my husband to attend grad school, bought our first house, and had a baby. Wowzers. Life has definitely changed a lot in what is a relatively short amount of time!

Back to the challenge.

Students are given five pieces to be assembled in 3 challenges that follow one right after the other.



Challenge 1: Use exactly one piece to form a square.

Easy, right?

Challenge 2: Use exactly four pieces to form a square.

Much harder, right?

Challenge 3: Use exactly five pieces to form a square.

This is usually where students hit a road block. How in the world can I make a square with both exactly four of the pieces and all five off the pieces? It is possible. I promise.

I originally found the puzzle on a Netherlands brain teaser site. The original puzzle only includes the third challenge since it provides the puzzle pieces in the formation of the second challenge. I decided to make it more interesting by adding the first two challenges. The first challenge is solve-able by all and just for fun. The second challenge is usually solve-able by about half my students when I pose this challenge. And, the third challenge is usually solved by only a handful. 



In the past, I've always given out the pieces in small ziplock bags and verbally presented the three challenges to students.



For my updated version, I decided to type up the challenges so students don't have to rely on my verbal instructions.

Then, just like the pi puzzle, I had to make a jumbo version that can be used on a large table or posted on a dry erase board with magnetic pieces.


 You can download the new and improved version of the 1, 4, 5 square challenge here.