Welcome 2014! Adding and Subtracting Decimal Numbers

Welcome 2014!  A new year is upon us, and resolutions are already in full swing.  I can’t believe it is already February!

Unfortunately at the end of 2013 I was unable to keep my blog current.  I will try to do better in 2014!

This month of January, has been a cold, snow filled month here in Alberta!  I am not complaining, though, as one of my passions is snowmobiling, and because of the mass amount of snow we have had, we have been able to get out quite a bit this season. Unfortunately of late, the rain has ice crusted the snow…and now we are into warmer temperatures and it seems the snow may go fast.

In January we were working in our Math class on addition and subtraction of decimal numbers.

Some of my favorite sites that students have visited so far are:

Math Is Fun:  http://www.mathsisfun.com/worksheets/decimals.php

Khan Academy: https://www.khanacademy.org/math/arithmetic/decimals/adding_decimals/v/subtracting-decimals

If anyone needs to make some practice worksheets see:

Math Aids:  http://www.math-aids.com/Decimals/Add_Subtract_Worksheets.html

February has brought us to the study of Motion Geometry.

Student’s have been really enjoying the many activities in this unit, learning about translations, reflections, and rotations.

Some of my favourite sites are:

Kids Love 2Learn.ca: Transformation  http://www.2learn.ca/kids/listMath.aspx?Type=3

Math is Fun :  http://www.mathsisfun.com/geometry/translation.html

BBC Bitsize: Transformations  http://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/ks3/maths/shape_space/transformations1/revision/1/

BBC Education:  –Bathroom Tiles: Rotate, reflect, and translate the patterns on the bathroom wall      http://learni.st/learnings/545807-bbc-education-bathroom-tiles-game

Bob’s Place: Grade 5 – Patterns & Motion in Geometry (Nelson Chapter 14)   http://www.bobsedulinks.com/math/math5_1314.htm#Chapter14

Eduplace: RoboPacker  http://www.eduplace.com/kids/mw/swfs/robopacker_grade5.html

Harcourt SchoolIcy Slides Flips and Turns   http://www.harcourtschool.com/activity/icy_slides_flips_turns/

MathOnline: Transformation Golf   http://www.onlinemathlearning.com/transformation-games.html

Mister Teacher: Alphabet Transformation   http://www.misterteacher.com/alphabetgeometry/transformations.html

Study Jams – select Geometry and then select Transformations   http://studyjams.scholastic.com/studyjams/jams/math/index.htm

Wrapping Paper Patterns  http://www.beaconlearningcenter.com/Weblessons/WrappingPaperPatterns/default.htm

Here’s hoping everyone has a wonderful February!

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October Adventures-Halloween is coming!

This year has been extremely busy, and I am just now able to update my blog.  I hope everyone has had  a smooth transition to the new school year.

Patterning has been my class focus thus far in mathematics.  With Halloween quickly approaching students have really been enjoying practicing their math skills via ghost and goblin activities.

Check out the following sites if you are looking for curriculum extension ideas and activities:

Halloween Math: http://www.educationworld.com/a_curr/mathchat/mathchat009.shtml

Game-Halloween Math:http://www.smartygames.com/igre/math/halloweenMath.html

And more:  http://www.squiglysplayhouse.com/Games/Holidays/Halloween.html

Halloween Activities and Games for Teachers:http://www.apples4theteacher.com/holidays/halloween/

Halloween Math Games: http://www.auntlee.com/halloween_MATH_Games.htm

More Halloween Math Games:http://kidsactivitiesblog.com/7298/halloween-math-games

Halloween Math Activities:http://www.notimeforflashcards.com/2012/10/halloween-math-activities-for-kids.html

Halloween jokes and riddles sticker

-borrowed from http://squareheadteachers.com/category/holidaysseasons/halloween/

Happy Halloweening!

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Different Division Methods in the Month of May

I sense June just around the corner…June is always such a busy month in my classroom madly trying to finish up any curriculum outcomes that students haven’t mastered.

The last part of the month of May we have mainly been focusing on division strategies.  Similar to multiplication, students have been using individual strategies to help them understand the concept of division.

Some of these strategies include:

Mental Division Methods, Tips, and Shortcuts:




Standard Algorithm:

division 1       division 3

division 2   grouping in division

standard division



Fact Families:

fact families divsion

Lattice Division:

lattice division 2

Video on Lattice Division:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a4Ms0ddJFvM

My Dog Division

I knew it was really,
A silly decision,
To get a new dog,
And name him Division…

Division ain’t average,
Like other ole’ mutts,
He doesn’t eat food,
No ands, ifs, or buts…
He’s sick! yelled my Mom,
He’s ill, said my Dad,
He’s perfectly fine,
He’s really quite glad…
He doesn’t eat food,
He never does that,
He lives on his quotients,
They keep him quite fat…
The first day I gave him,
4 pieces of treat,

I came home that day,
He’d had nothing to eat!!
He’d divided his treats,
Into 2 equal parts..
2 treats in each pile,
My dog had math smarts!!
The next day, I put out,
More and more biscuit,
9 treats in his bowl,

A lot, but I’d risk it…
But when I returned,
He’d eaten not one,
3 piles of 3,
My dog was not dumb!!!
I shouted and shouted,
Division…go eat!!!
I screamed,
And yelled,
I would not take defeat!
I poured 36,
Small pieces of steak,
Into his dog bowl,
And left him a cake…

But when I returned,
Had he eaten the beef?

6 piles of 6…
My dog was no dope!!!
The cake was all gone,
And that’s the sweet-truth,
I think, Division,
Has a sweet-tooth…
Division, I said,
What are we gonna do?
If you keep finding quotients,
There won’t be a you!!!
We must travel down,
Some other pet-path,
Now Division is learning,
Some new types of math!!!

Division Limerick

Division, division, division,
A terribly easy decision,
Lets me just share,
My apple or pear,
With utter and perfect precision….

Here’s some good words of advice,
I think I might say them all twice,
Learn each times table,
And you’ll also be able,
To go and divide really nice…

Young laddie, it won’t make things worse,
Division brings no type of curse,
Repeated subtraction?
Break to a fraction?
Or multiply things in reverse?

Quotients are things that we find,
When division’s how math problem’s signed,
It has the math smarts,
To cut pies in parts,
The inverse of things we combined…

Poem and Limerick borrowed from  Mr. R’s World of Math and Science  http://mathstory.com/poems

Hope everyone has a great May Long Weekend!

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Multiple Multiplying Methods for the Month of May

May is soon to be upon us, and my students are busy exploring multiplication strategies.

Below are just a few that often come up in our studies.

Standard Agorithm (and slight adaptations):

x method 1 standard algorithm 1

x method 4standard algorithmx method 5 

Halving and Doubling method:

half doublehalf double 2


Chisenbop Method:  You can check it out online at:  http://cs.iupui.edu/~aharris/chis/chis.html


Lattice Multiplication:  Video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cijuPxHgZAA

lattice xlatticelattice x 2


Array/Box Methods:

x method 7x method 2x method 8x method 6

x method 9


Students are exploring many different methods of approach- not just the standard algorithm.

Merry Multiplying in May!



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April is Math Month

Welcome April!

What an exciting month! Spring is almost here- in Alberta though it is still more like winter- with frequent snow falls still occuring!

Math Month is one of my favorite mathematical seasons.  My students are enjoying April by experimenting with Motion Geometry (Transformations).

This is always one of their favourite units.  They love the hands on aspect of translations, reflections, and rotations!

Using tools like the mira and computer really inspire my students to success!

Motion Geometry:  Translations, Reflections, Rotations:

Some of my favourite websites to use in this unit, to help supplement my classroom, are:

BBC Bitsize: Transformations

Black Gold Engaging Students -Division II- Math 5  http://engagingstudents.blackgold.ca/index.php/division-ii/math-d2/math-5/shape-and-space5/

Bob’s Place: Grade 5Patterns & Motion in Geometry (Chapter 14)

Canada’s Wonderland  found at http://www.canadaswonderland.com/images/uploads/file/Math%20Grade%205%20&%206.doc

Eduplace: RoboPacker (choose a higher level)

Harcourt School: Icy Slides Flips and Turns

Kids Love 2Learn.ca: Transformations

MathOnline: Transformation Golf

Mister Teacher: Alphabet Transformation

Wrapping Paper Patterns

Happy Turning, Flipping, and Sliding!

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World Maths Day

Enjoy the friendly competition from around the world at


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Fractions in February

My students were involved in many exploratory stations to help them learn all about fractions this month.  The activity stations I set up were based on the Grade 5 Fractions Planning Guide: Number :Specific Outcome 7 from LearnAlberta.ca.

Fraction Lesson Overview:

Fraction lesson overview

Station 1:  Geoboards & Bonus Question 1

Geoboard Activity 1    Geoboard 2 Activity 2   Bonus 1

Station 2:  Fraction Circles & Bonus Question 2

Fraction Circles 1     Fraction Circles 2   Bonus 2

Station 3:  Pattern Blocks & Bonus Question 3

Pattern Blocks Activity 1   Pattern Blocks 2  Bonus 3

Station 4:  Fraction Strips & Bonus Question 4

Fraction Strips   Fraction Strips 2   Bonus 4

HOTS Activity:  World Record’s Largest Banana Split

Banana Split final activity

Students were very active and enjoyed working on exploring fractions using a variety of manipulatives.

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Welcome 2013- Welcome Back NHL

Welcome 2013!  We have started off an exciting new year in the classroom.  Students are extremely motivated and task oriented.

Upon completing their decimal concepts, students were given a HOTS Activity to explore.

Living in Alberta, just outside of Edmonton in a small hockey spirited community, with the NHL back up and running after a long lock-out, my class members were excited to work on an activity I call “The Battle of Alberta”.

Following is a description of the inquiry based / creative thinking learning model I used to implement H.O.T.S. (Higher Order Thinking Skills) activities with some of my students.   Using our classroom set of netbooks I set out the following task.

Number Concepts Activity (including decimals)

The Battle of Alberta


Your parents give you $150.00 for your 17th birthday.  You and a friend want to go to the Edmonton Oilers game Saturday, January 26th, at 8:00 p.m.  They are playing off for the Battle of Alberta against the Calgary Flames.  You check ticketmaster for ticket prices and find ticket cost fluctuates from lower prices in the “nose bleed” section to pricier seats. Parking costs $12.00 if you decide to drive. The concession prices are posted with most items averaging around $5.00.  Don’t forget they have the Oilers store that you may want to visit.

With your budget, make a plan for your evening out.

Will you go dutch with your friend or will you be treating your friend?  How will you get to and from the game?  Where will you be sitting?  What (if anything) will you have to eat?  Will you be purchasing any souvenirs or memorabilia?

You are quite thrifty and want to make sure that you are getting the “most for your money”. 

Be prepared to share, discuss, and post your Oilers vs Flames evening plan.

Some of the sites that my students chose to search and visit via their netbooks included:

  Rexall Place in Edmonton, AB  (Home of the Edmonton Oilers)

Rexall Place Seating Chart

Ticketmaster-Logo.jpg picture by oldschoolisbackStudents visited Ticketmaster or The Official Website of the Edmonton Oilers to actually price seats for the game

Rexall Place Concessions- Students found a site that actually had a picture of the concession prices and referred to these items and prices when doing this project.

Oiler’s Store at Rexall Place- students could visit the virtual on-line version of the Edmonton Oiler’s Store to view merchandise and decide if they were going to purchase any memorbalia.

Students worked within their given dollar amount (for this event $150), and devised individual budgets for their night out.  They were adding, subtracting, multiplying numbers and the math talk was very rich with students explaining to peers what they were doing and why.  When presenting they were justifying why they chose to buy an item, or why they decided not to buy a particular item.  Students explained their thinking strategies aloud to a very captive audience. This activity allowed for success for all my students by scaffolding the assignment.   In my classroom my students found this learning activity to be very rewarding and even fun.  In repeating Dr. Chapman’s words…”Math is fun when you understand it!”

Please Note:

I am attaching a PDF copy of the activity I used in my classroom in case anyone else in interested.

The Battle of Alberta

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Exploring Decimals in November

November is passing fast!  My students have been super busy studying patterning and numeration.  We are now onto decimal activities.  Some of my students have a great grasp of this concept already, while others are finding it more challenging.
With the use of our class set of netbooks we have been reinforcing and solidifying our learning.

One of our most used resources is our Black Gold Engaging Students Grade 5 Number links:


Other Decimal Game sites we have discovered include:







Borrowed from Kingston Elementary site:

This poem helps students remember the steps for multiplying decimals.

Multiplying decimals is easy to do

Multiply first and when you’re through

Count the decimal places up on top

Match it in the answer, then you can stop.

This poem helps students remember the steps for dividing a decimal by a whole number.

No decimal in the divisor

What will you do?

Pop it in the quotient

Divide and you are through

This poem helps students remember the steps for dividing a decimal by a decimal.

Move the decimal to the end   (in the divisor)

Move the decimal _____ again (once, twice- in the dividend)

Pop the decimal up on top

Now divide, no need to stop

Classroom Magic

Borrowed from Mrs. Smith…this is a helpful poem to help students read decimals. If they follow the instructions in the poem they will learn to say it and write it correctly every time!

(oops she missed the “d” in thousandths-but you get the idea 🙂 )

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Happy Halloween!

Wow, this year is really flying!  Can’t believe that tomorrow is already Halloween!  I have been very neglectful of my blog…but am hoping to make up for it with some of the interesting Halloween activities I have come across.

There is a ton of really good material on the Super Teacher site at http://www.superteacherworksheets.com/.   Unfortunately not all worksheets are free at this site.  It is a site that many of my colleagues use regularly…so you might want to consider getting a subscription for it.

Some freebies…

Smartboard resource:  Halloween Math Gr 4/5//6 level found at http://exchange.smarttech.com/search.html?q=%20halloween

Halloween Math Sheets:   free sheets in many strands can be found at these sites:



Ed Helper:  http://freebies.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=freebies&cdn=hobbies&tm=290&f=00&su=p284.13.342.ip_&tt=3&bt=0&bts=0&zu=http%3A//www.edhelper.com/Halloween_Math.htm

Kidzone  http://www.kidzone.ws/math/halloween/index.htm#WORKSHEETS5

Halloween Math Challenges:


Math Stories:

The Story of The Not So Great Pumpkin


Borrowed from:  http://mathstory.com/index.html#.UJA_92fZ1JA – check out the site!

mr r.'s world of math and science

Place Value Halloween

Here’s the Trick or Treat map to be used with this poem!
Ones (that’s us!)
100 10 1 100 10 1 100 10 1

I was dressed as a ghost,
A goblin-ghoul,
I’d just returned home,
From a long day at school…
I grabbed up my pumpkin,
It was plastic of course,
I called down my sister,
Dressed as a horse,
horse costume
Out to get tricked,
Out to be treated,
When candy time came,
We wouldn’t be cheated!
Let me first say,
My name is Ten,
And sister’s name is Hundred…
And baby brother’s,
Name is One,
He’s really a silly, but fun-kid…
We went next door,
To the house of the Thousand’s,
They had,
10 dogs,
10 ducks,
duckie rubberduckie rubberduckie rubberduckie rubberduckie rubberduckie rubberduckie rubberduckie rubberduckie rubberduckie rubber
10 cows…
cow cowcowcowcowcowcowcowcowcow
And they had 3 kids,
One,Ten, Hundred,
That made me think,
As I stood and wondered,
How’d they have,
The same names as us?
Why weren’t they named,
Brenda or Russ?
But that’s okay,
I won’t make a fuss…
They tossed us 3 candies,
snickers barsnickers barsnickers bar
Then we ran like a race,
The thousands were big,
Scared us back to our place…
The next house,
To the left,
On our spooky, dark street…
I wasn’t surprised,
Knew that we’d meet,
The Million’s family,
For they lived next door,
To the thousands’ house…
And we did like before…
We walked up their driveway,
And knocked on their door,
They had three kids,
One,Ten, Hundred,
And that made me think,
As I stood and wondered,
How’d they have,
The same names as us?
Why weren’t they named,
Susanna or Gus?
But that’s okay,
I won’t make any fuss…
If they have 3 kids,
Named just like us,
We’ll get 3 treats,
snickers barsnickers barsnickers bar
And that’s a big plus!!!
But when the door opened,
I let out a scream,
The Millions were giant,
Like 2 tons of ice cream!!!
I grabbed,
Sister, Hundred,
I grabbed,
Baby, One,
I closed my ghost eyes,
And we started to run…
We ran from the Millions,
We ran past the Thousands,
We ran past the dogs,
And the ducks,
And the cows…
And we finally got back,
To Mom and Dad’s place,
And I felt like we’d finished,
A 10-mile race…
We got,
In our spots,
Time to go ‘sleepy,’
And dreamed of the Millions,
So big, and so creepy…


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