Engaging Resources to Enhance Your Math Instruction

Engaging Resources to Enhance Your Math Instruction

Are you looking for ways to engage your students in meaningful problem-solving tasks? Do you want to bring more engaging and fun mathematics into your classroom? At the recent Fall 2021 ABE Conference: Still Here, Still Awesome!, practitioners shared their favorite math resources during one of our Coffee Break sessions. Below are just a handful of resources that were shared. Be sure to check out this padlet for more ideas!

Math Fails

Sara Van Der Werf is a leader in effective mathematics instruction. On her blog, she highlights math fails found on store signs, product labels, graphs, and more. Using these great pictures of everyday math fails will engage your students in mathematical discourse. Post images on a bulletin board or class website, and ask students to find what the “math fail” is, if any. Students can participate individually, in small groups, on discussion boards, or in a class setting. These prompts provide a great opportunity to develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills!

Free Math Puzzles

Mashup Math is another great resource to start problem-solving conversations with your learners. You can access puzzles with a range of difficulty levels. They provide a fun, non-threatening way to build students’ algebraic reasoning skills!  Sign up for the newsletter and get free puzzles sent directly to your email.

Real-life Application Problems

While there are a handful of free lessons available to browse, Citizen Math is a subscription-based resource. However, the value of these math application lessons far outweigh the reasonable monthly cost! Lesson titles include:

  • Is there an upside to having a bad day? (positive and negative integers)
  • What factors influence homelessness in a city? (linear equations)
  • How dangerous is texting and driving? (ratios and proportions)
  • How much would it cost to get all the toys in a Happy Meal? (Probability)
  • Why are so many Americans dying from opiate overdoses? (Rational functions)
  • What’s the best way to position a car’s mirror? (Expressions and equations)

And those are just the free lessons! With a subscription, you will gain access to even more relevant math application activities. Not only are these lessons great for a math classroom, but they offer great ideas for essential questions to guide an ELA unit that embeds numeracy skills as well!

Visuals to Prompt Student Thinking

This is a great resource to engage students at ALL levels in thinking about fractions!

FractionTalks.com includes a library of fraction talk visuals to choose from, an explanation of what fraction talks are, and ideas for incorporating them into your classroom. This is a resource you will definitely want to check out!

Algebra by Example

Sign up for free to access over 40 assignments of sample student work, enabling learners to analyze both correct and incorrect answers. These activities can provide a more engaging way to solidify algebraic concepts.

Open this padlet to explore even more resources to use with your students. (And feel free to add your own math gems to the padlet as well! Just use the pink + sign at the bottom right of your screen.) Please also check out the Numeracy Library on the ATLAS website for more math content and instructional resources and activities.

A final note: Sometimes it can be overwhelming to choose between the many awesome resources available to us to enhance instruction – but what a great “problem” to have! Hopefully one or two of these resources stood out as useful and applicable for your teaching context.

Lindsey Pust, Numeracy & Special Projects Coordinator ATLAS