Tuesday, January 24, 2012


Tonight's homework:

- Read for 20 minutes (or more!) with a good book
- Reading log (due Friday)
- Math Packet ("Things That Come in Groups, etc." due Friday)

Today we started our unit on multiplication (and division) in math.  We talked about what it means to multiply, looked at the "x" sign and brainstormed lists of things that come in groups of 2s, 3s, 4s (and so on).  These lists will help us connect multiplication problems to real life once we have them finished.


Things that come in 3s
- sides on a triangle
- wheels on a tricycle
- tennis balls in a pack
- holes on a bowling ball
- lights (red, yellow, green) on a traffic light
- colors (red, white, blue) on an American Flag

Using this list, we can come up with multiplication problems like the following:

"There are 4 triangles drawn on a piece of paper.  Each triangle has 3 sides.  How many sides are there in all?"

"I drive through 6 traffic lights on my way home each day.  Each traffic light has 3 different lights on it.  How many lights are there in all?"

Once we are comfortable generating these problems, we can talk about different ways to solve them (and eventually decide on the best way(s) to solve them).

Today some students shared a strategy of adding over and over again (repeated addition).  Others shared a strategy of counting up by a certain number (skip counting).  I would encourage skip counting practice at home (e.g., 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35...).  Familiarity when counting by 4s, 5s, 6s, 7s, 8s, 9s, etc. will help a great deal when solving multiplication problems!

Have fun!  Enjoy the beautiful weather today!

- Mr. B

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