As a teacher we are always on the lookout when we are shopping for different ways to use ordinary items in our classroom. Last week I had to step into the Dollar Tree to grab some things for a workshop and I decided to go ahead and go through the store and see some things that I could find that would be fun and different to use in math lessons.
I’m always looking for new things to use for visual representations and these hearts are just perfect. I can see working on equations with two variables and substituting a different color heart in to stand for each variable so students have o determine what red or pink stands for in each equation. Great to build the relationship of how a variable, no matter the letter, can be a different value in EVERY EQUATION.
These boxes of stickers contain 8 stickers and would be great if students are doing a gallery walk to look at problems that other students have solved. You could have them take a sheet around with them and when they see a word problem that has been solved above and beyond they simply would add a sticker. They could also do it for a problem that they have also worked out on their white board while walking around and if they agree with the answer they add a sticker.
When I saw the Glittered Table Scatter I immediately thought of using it to keep track of score on some games. If you are playing a game a game and get a point then you get a heart. Students could then redeem their hearts for certain rewards. You could also use them as a counter manipulative for an activity like Zero Pairs.
When can you not use stamps? I can see as a teacher as my students are working on an activity in class that I would walk around and give them immediate feedback with the stamps and mark problems that I can immediately see that are correct. I’m telling you my 7th and 8th graders LOVE stickers and stamps!
These Mardi Gras coins would work great as markers or a 3 person game as there are three colors- purple, green and gold. They could also be used as a token economy for a certain period as well as points being received during a game.
I immediately thought of some of my teachers friends who work with younger students when I saw these eggs. What kid wouldn’t want to play with glittery eggs to use as a manipulative when working with place value, counters for an activity and so on. I know that for the few years I taught second grade I tried to bring in the different seasons through manipulatives because it just made it fun. Imagine modeling some CGI problems around Easter that students could then see and touch the actual eggs rather than just drawing the pictures.
We all know I am a fan of FUN tape for using in Interactive Notebooks. I saw both of these while at Dollar Tree and I resisted picking them up because I was out of town. Now that I am home you better bet that I will be making a trip to pick some up!
I hope you started to think of some other uses for everyday things that we see in the stores. I know that we as teachers are constantly spending money on our classrooms but I’m a firm believer that if we are excited about what we are teaching then we will engage our students. I know that having fun supplies excites me!
**I am in no way affiliated with Dollar Tree. I have not been compensated in anyway for this blog post. I spent my own time and money to purchase items that were used in workshops and my opinions and ideas that are expressed are that of my own.**