I am happy to say that I did not make this task. One of the paraprofessionals who worked in my classroom did. All I had to contribute was a 'seal of approval' and a grateful heart that she put her skills to use and make something wonderful and useful for the students.

IMG_1054This was not a difficult task to build. Nor is it a difficult task to use.

Materials: library pockets, marker, laminate, shapes (either bought or homemade or perhaps from an Ellison machine), a sheet of card stock cut lengthwise, and glue (I prefer Elmer's Rubber Cement).

First, write the numbers that you wish to use on the outside of the library pockets. In our example, we were working with addends that resulted in sums 6-10. You can use whatever numbers (sums) you like so long as the addends correspond to the numbers written on the library pockets.

Second, take whatever little shape you have decided to use and using a Sharpie or other permanent marker, write your addends upon them. In the example from my classroom, we have used three different addends for each sum. These addends are written upon the shapes as shown below–in this case, we used stars. I think they were purchased at the Dollar Tree or some other thrifty store.

IMG_1053After the addends are written upon the shapes, you may choose to laminate them. I personally laminate everything in the classroom because I work in special education and things tend to get folded, spindled, ripped, mutilated, and chewed upon with great frequency. This helps protect them and give them a longer shelf life–so to speak.

Third, take the library pockets and glue them to the piece of card stock (or you can use a piece of poster-board too). If your school has a laminator, it would be a good idea to laminate the entire project.

And that's just about it. The great thing about this task is its flexibility. You can use any numbers you like and even though we used addition facts, you can also use subtraction, multiplication, and division so long as the numbers correspond. IMG_1051

One final thing, I have no problems also allowing my students to use manipulatives (objects) to represent the math they are doing at the time. Students who are visual learners will appreciate having counting bears or some other such objects to help work out the problems.

Two things of note:

    1. Storage might be somewhat of an issue given that the project is oddly shaped. I solved this problem by folding the game in half.

    2. The possibility remains that the students might memorize the answers based solely upon the placement of numbers. Feel free to mix it up as much as possible in order to prevent such a reflex.

Common Core Standards addressed for addition and subtraction: K.OA.1, K.OA.5, K.OA.3, 1.OA.5, 1.OA.6 (perhaps more).

Enjoy!

Related articlesSee also this game that we built in my classroom. It too deals with addition and/or multiplication.

Learning Addition or Multiplication Playing Games
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