Sunday, June 9, 2013

Multiplication Sundae Celebration

        I just wrapped up my third year teaching third grade and over the course of the years I have made some improvements along the way (I hope).  My first year I was departmentalized (ELA only) and then the second two years I was self-contained (and inclusion) and taught everything, which I prefer, it's much easier time management wise to steal from another subject rather than another group of students.  During my second year in third grade I had to tackle the dreaded times tables.  I followed the lead of my fellow math teachers and we tackled a set of facts a week.  Everyone tested on the 2s, then everyone tested on the 3s and so on regardless of mastery.  For most of the students this worked out just fine, however, for a small group of kiddos they just got further and further behind each week.  This year (my third year in third grade) I adjusted my plan and the students had to demonstrate mastery (100%) on a timed set of facts before they could move on to the next set.  In order to provide motivation I explained that at the end of the year the students would have the opportunity to participate in a multiplication sundae celebration, BUT they had to earn everything.  It looked like this:

4s= 1 scoop of ice cream
5s= 1 scoop of ice cream
6s= 1 scoop of ice cream
7s-12s=1 topping/fact
mixed=anything you want (on the table)

You might be wondering about the 0s and 1s?  Those didn't "count" because we learned the zero property of multiplication and the identity property of multiplication during our multiplication unit.  
        After a semester of practicing, testing, etc... we finally had our celebration at the end of the year and I am happy to announce that all of my students earned at least one topping on their ice cream.  This was a huge accomplishment for my students and a whole lot more fun.  If you do not already have a working motivational system and your kiddos need it I would highly recommend the ice cream sundaes!!!

1 comment:

  1. We do this too!! It is such a great motivator. ~Amanda