Numeracy Resources

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180 Ways to Use Estimation 180: Inequalities

Estimation 180 is an incredibly rich resource that offers photographs that we can use in meaningfully developing students' number sense. In this blog post, the author uses 4 of the images (and the students' estimates about those images) to quickly and meaningfully introduce (or review) graphing and writing inequalities.

22? 30? 50? 100?

A teacher of children blogs about a challenging experience working with a student learning to count. An ABE teacher of basic numeracy may find many suggestions in the comments of this blog entry very useful.

3-Act Lesson: Volume of a Cylinder

A 3-act lesson starts with a quick video or visual that makes students wonder. In the videos for this 3-act lesson, Jenn Vadnais offers students a chance to consider the volume of a cylinder of Playdoh.

An Excellent Lesson for Long Division

This blog post offers some important aspects to consider in how we teach long division to our students. How does place value play a role in long division, and how do I teach long division so my students strengthen that understanding? The post includes video, a word problem, and a lesson plan that you could use tomorrow!

Another Blog Post About Fraction Division

This blog post was created to help teachers understand a strategy for making division with fractions visual and meaningful for students.

AREA: Big Cheez-its & Multiplication and Rectangles

Two children discuss whether "Big Cheez-its" are really twice as big as regular Cheez-its. While the learners in this case are children, numeracy students of all ages could enjoy exploring area with a similar question.

Barbie Bungee: Illuminations

From the posting: "In this lesson, students model a bungee jump using a Barbie® doll and rubber bands. The distance to which the doll will fall is directly proportional to the number of rubber bands, so this context is used to examine linear functions." Appropriate for CCRS Level D, Level E. [Note: Resource only accessible for NCTM members.]

Circles, Lines and Angles

A teacher describes a strategy for students to engage with the content and activate prior knowledge at the beginning of a geometry unit.

Concept, Method, Procedure (The Secret Formula for Math Success)

Max Ray, of The Math Forum, explores developing procedures from conceptual understanding. His 5-minute video uses dividing by fractions as the topic for instruction.

Conservation: The More Things Change The More They Stay the Same

This blog post describes a lesson with kindergarteners where they observe very short videos (linked from the posting) and discuss what they notice and wonder. These videos could be great for discussion for learners at many levels of math and language.

Create a Graph

You and your students can use this online tool to create graphs.

Desmos: Graphing

What if students could "play" with graphs and quickly see what changing a single component would do to a graph (such as changing the b in y =mx+b)? Desmos is user friendly and thoughtfully uses color and layout in ways that support students' understanding. 

Desmos: Linear Inequalities in Standard Form

Desmos is an online graphing calculator. Many teachers have created activities for their classes using the calculator. Activities on the site are created by teachers and Desmos staff and will vary. You can also create your own activities.

Fluency Without Fear

Turns out memorization, timed tests and flash cards are not the most effective ways to learn math facts! This article from Jo Boaler addresses developing students' fluency with math facts (such as times tables), including confidence and how some common approaches to math facts can be related to anxiety and loss of perseverance.

For Teachers: Please Don’t Teach Exponent Rules

A teacher writes about how he approaches operations with exponents so that the students make meaning and discover the rules for operations with exponents for themselves.

Fraction Talk (and Pie)

Math teacher Chase Orton lays out the instruction he used, starting with pictures of pies, in order to get students to use benchmark fractions.

Fruit Splat: Numbers to Words

Can your student match the word and the digit (for example - "five" and "5")?  This fun online activity will let them practice.

Geometric Subitizing: A Different Kind of Number Talk

The discussion cards posted on this site can be used to discuss counting and grouping strategies with students. This could be a great way to engage students using vocabulary around numbers and shapes. 

Geometric Subitizing: Counting Discussion Cards

The discussion cards posted on this site can be used to discuss counting and grouping strategies with students. This could be a great way to engage students using vocabulary around numbers and shapes. 

Graphing Stories

These are 15-second videos that show a real-life event. Students are encouraged to graph the event. The video reveals the suggested graph at the end. The site allows you to sort by type of graph and offers a printable graphing handout. Appropriate for CCRS Level C, Level D, Level E.

How Big Is the Guatemala Sinkhole?

A fun and short activity from Robert Kaplinsky to find the volume of a sinkhole.

How much did the temperature drop? Absolute Value

Robert Kaplinsky describes the lesson this way: "This lesson uses a time lapse thermometer video as a context for discussing integer operations and absolute value. The video should provide some added meaning to the classic temperature drop problem."

How tall was my plant?

An activity where students must determine how tall the plant was x time ago if it is a certain height now and how fast it will grow.

If Graphing Linear Inequalities Is Aspirin, Then How Do You Create the Headache?

Brief blog post by Dan Meyer that addresses teaching students not just the procedure for how to graph linear inequalities, but providing the opportunity for them to consider why the conventional representation (graph) is an efficient way to go.

Instructional Strategies for Counting

These three blog posts from an elementary math coach describe instructional strategies around basic counting that may be useful for some ABE teachers addressing very basic numeracy.

Introducing the Orangamallow

A quick reading about a quick strategy a teacher uses to make "like terms" meaningful to her students.

Labor Mediator

"In this problem, student groups serve as mediators to settle a dispute between the owner and the union of a small manufacturing company. ... This is a really engaging problem that raises important questions about the way data, often perceived as being completely objective, can be biased and informed by perspective."

Linear Matching

A printable matching activity for matching graphs to equations.

Math Antics: Negative Numbers

This video introduces negative numbers on a number line, demonstrates comparing positive and negative numbers by comparing position on a number line. The video also models negative numbers using a picture representing sea level.

Math Antics: Types of Fractions

This video presents types of fractions (proper, improper, etc.) and addresses how students can use the structure of a fraction to make sense of where it belongs on the number line. The video points out that the relationship between the numerator and denominator is division.

Math Snacks: Counting

Online activities and videos for supporting students' understanding of math concepts such as ratios, scale factors, fractions, number lines, and so on. Some activities may need additional language learning supports (i.e. for beginning English learners). Videos are also available in Spanish and in a printable "comic book" form.

Math Snacks: Fractions

Online activities and videos for supporting students' understanding of math concepts such as ratios, scale factors, fractions, number lines, and so on. Some activities may need additional language learning supports (i.e. for beginning English learners). Videos are also available in Spanish and in a printable "comic book" form.

Math Snacks: Ratios

Online activities and videos for supporting students' understanding of math concepts such as ratios, scale factors, fractions, number lines, and so on. Some activities may need additional language learning supports (i.e. for beginning English learners). Videos are also available in Spanish and in a printable "comic book" form.

Math Visuals

Imagine that a math teacher made simple, attractive visuals to spark student discussion around counting and basic operations. Berkeley Everett did - and here it is!

Mean, Median, and Range: Open Middle

Students are asked to find a data set to satisfy certain criteria. There is a worksheet provided on the right-hand side of the website where students can record their attempts at answering this question and what they learned from each attempt.

One Formula to Rule Them All

Before you teach another formula for area of a 2-D shape, check out the "applets" on this page. Teachers who do not have access to internet in their classroom can learn from the animations and do a similar demonstration with paper.

Piles of Tiles (3-Act Lesson)

A 3-act lesson starts with a quick video or visual that makes students wonder. This one from Graham Fletcher (gfletchy) is set up to ponder the concept of area.

Playing Uno: The “Combine Like Terms” Version

Instructions and printables for a "combine like terms" UNO game.

Progression of Addition and Subtraction

What is a progression that builds to a conceptual understanding of addition and subtraction? In this 7-minute video, Gfletchy demonstrates strategies that teachers can use to develop students' conceptual understanding as a building block to fluency.

Progression of Division

What is a progression that builds to a conceptual understanding of division? In this 8-minute video, Gfletchy demonstrates strategies that teachers can use to develop students' conceptual understanding as a building block to fluency.

Progression of Early Number and Counting

What is an instructional progression that leads to conceptual understanding of counting and numbers? This 8-minute video lays out a progression for children learning these concepts, but ABE teachers of students with beginning numeracy will find useful ideas here.

Progression of Multiplication

What is a progression that builds to a conceptual understanding of multiplication? In this 6-minute video, Gfletchy demonstrates strategies that teachers can use to develop students' conceptual understanding as a building block to fluency.

Progressions: Illustrative Mathematics

Videos and tasks on math content progressions related to fractions in the Common Core standards.

Pythagorean Theorem Visual Model

This YouTube video shows a visual model to help students understand the Pythagorean Theorem.

Representing Data with Grouped Frequency Graphs and Box Plots

"This lesson unit is intended to help you assess how well students are able to interpret frequency graphs that use grouped data and their associated box plots. In particular this unit aims to identify and help students who have difficulty interpreting information from frequency graphs and box plots; such as minimum and maximum values, medians and quartiles."

Representing Variability with Mean, Median, Mode, and Range

This resource gives students practice with calculating the mean, median, mode, and range from a frequency chart. It also requires students to use a frequency chart to describe a possible data set, given information on the mean, median, mode, and range.

Resources for Basic Fractions

Several resources for teaching standard 3.NF.1 (Fraction representation) through the Levels of Knowing.

Uncovering Coherence Using Area Models

When is area more than area? In this recorded webinar, presenters Connie Rivera and Amy Vickers from the Adult Numeracy Network (ANN) explore coherent mathematical content that can be addressed using mathematical arrays.

Visual Patterns

A gallery of visual patterns can be used with students exploring algebra. Fawn Nguyen, the teacher behind the site, also documents her students' discussion of the patterns at mathtalks.net. You can also read about how ABE teachers are using the patterns.

Weird Conversation About Perimeter

A teacher's conversation with a student about what perimeter means.

What Michaels’ coupon should you use?

A good activity from Robert Kaplinsky to compare when one coupon might be better than another. Can be done with or without inequalities. Can also be extended to graph the inequalities.

Which Mistake to Pursue?

This blog post describes a class's exploration of an open-ended perimeter problem.

Which toilet uses less water?

Fun and applicable real life activity from Robert Kaplinsky that compares the amount of water used with different toilets.

College & Career Readiness (CCR) Math Standards

Looking for more specific information about the College & Career Readiness (CCR) Math Standards? Check out the CCRS Math Resources section of the CCR Standards resource library!