I’m starting to feel like there’s not really such a thing as a “normal” week; every Friday I say something about how this past week hasn’t been. So–this week was another “unnormal” week. Here are our warm-ups:

**Monday**

I was out Monday with a sick little girl, and somehow forgot to get a picture of that warm-up. This one is practice with both place value and decimals.

**Tuesday**

After reading the note from my Monday sub, I knew we needed to review what to do with the decimal point in this multiplication problem. Then, as in a stroke of genius, we made a connection to our fraction unit where we used fraction bars to help us visualize what the numbers were doing.

**Wednesday**

After we stumbled upon fraction bars again Tuesday, I gave them a problem where I had them use that strategy again (on purpose!). For many it was the visual they needed to help it click. But, for some others it just made them more confused! 😦 We had a great discussion about figuring out which strategy or model works for you and making sure you use that one well.

Close-up of the marking on the fraction bar: we took 1/4 out of each one of the 1/10, which made 6/24. Eventually we were able to simplify our answer all the way back to something that we could turn back into a decimal (1.5/10 or .150).

**Thursda****y and Friday**

Remember that “unnormal” part of this week? On Thursday we were only at school for about 20 minutes before we left to head to the middle school for the dress rehearsal of their Spring production of* Guys and Dolls Jr.* (which was FABULOUS, by the way!), so we didn’t have math this day. We had the discussion over this warm-up today. Because many people got thrown off by both 1) the exponents in this problem and 2) the “backwards” nature of how I did expanded form, we did another example problem first (the number at the bottom). This problem is a great example of how the warm-up is often a response of something that happens in our math rotations–as we were studying the rubric for the standard of Reading and Writing Decimals, we realized that we needed more practice with expanded form. So that group requested we do more with it in our morning work. Great idea, friends!

*What are you thinking about our math warm-ups lately? Do you have a suggestion for a decimal problem we could do? Feel free to share it and we’ll try it, then leave you the answer! We’re always ready to try something new!*

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You make me want to teach math even though I don’t like math. 🙂 If I teach it next year, IF, I am using this math warmup idea!!

Shannon

http://www.irunreadteach.wordpress.com

Yay! I’m so glad they are interesting, and I hope they will be helpful. Honestly, I didn’t start them until February last year, and didn’t realize the impact they make on my teaching and my kiddos until this time around. Just the 5-10 minute conversation gives us a chance to discuss and learn twice as much as without them. What did I do all those years before I found them? I’ll never go back. 🙂