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Activity Journal

Steph McJunkin ECH 415

Activity 1: Shoe Prints

Grade: 1-4 Topic/Standard: Geometry, Data Analysis, Representation, Connections Procedures: Each student takes off one shoe. The students turn over their shoe so the tread is facing them. They place a piece of paper on top of the shoe. The student then colors the entire shoe print making a shoe print. The students then place the shoe print on the floor making a track of right prints and left prints. The students then compare the difference between the number of right and left shoe prints. Comments: I thought this activity would be great for lower elementary grades. However, it could be adapted for higher order thinking. Extension/Connection: An adaptation that could be made for the upper elementary grades could be having each classroom in a designated grade create a shoe print and the students can determine the probability of getting a left shoe print. Also, as an extension for the younger grades, the students can create a bar graph or a circle graph display the results of measuring each shoe print.

Activity 2: Tangram
Grade: 3rd- 4th Topic/Standard: Geometry, Problem Solving, Communication Procedures: The students will be paired off. One person from each pair will have a picture that was created using the tangram shapes. The student who has the picture of the creation will be giving oral instructions on how to create the same image to their partner. Once one partner has attempted to recreate the creation, the roles will switch. (The partner who is recreating the image is not allowed to see the picture till after the oral directions are given.) Comments: The activity is excellent to give practice giving directions. Extension/Connection: I would incorporate the books that are associated with the use of tangrams. Also, you can broaden vocabulary by eliminating basic terms that students use when giving directions and providing alternatives.

Activity 3: How much is a million?

Grade: 5th Topic/Standard: Measurement and Problem Solving Procedures: Begin by grouping the class into smaller groups. Each group will need to find something in the classroom that they can measure using a ruler. Then ask the class to picture if they have a million of them. (How much space would that take up? Where would we need to store a million of them?) You can then have the students determine how many of that chosen object would be needed to reach from point A to point B, how many you would need to fill the chalkboard, fill the gym etc. Comments: I feel this activity would be great when used in the upper elementary grades (4-5). The activity involves a lot of calculation, measurement, and conversion. Extension/Connection: As a challenge for students, I would ask them to determine how many would be needed to make a trillion or how many would be needed to reach Mars from the classroom.

Activity 4: Chip Trading

Grade: 3rd-4th Topic/Standard: Number and Operation and Representation Procedures: Each student is given red, green, yellow, and blue chips. Each partner gets three turns before giving the dice to their partner. The teacher explains that the chip trading value is a 3-1 ratio. You can only trade 3 yellow for 1 blue 3 blue for 1 green 3 green for 1 red The first partner to roll the dice receives the number of yellow chips represented by the number on the dices. Once you collect 3 of one color, the student can trade up for the next color. Ultimately, you want to be the partner who has one red chip at the end. Version 2: This time, the students keep track of how many turns they have consecutively taken. After their fourth turn, the student takes away that many chips instead of adding to the total. Comments: I struggled with this game. I was to busy trying to do everything in my head rather than just following the direction. Extension/Connection: I would incorporate other ratios to increase the difficulty.

Chip Trading Continued

Each student will need at least 20 chips and a graph similar to below.
Red Yellow Blue Green

Activity 5: Smart Cards

Grade: 4th Topic/Standard: Numbers/Operations and Problem Solving Procedures: Copy the smart card (5), so they are large enough to be seen by the class. Ask a student to pick a number between 131. As you show each card have the students point to the number each time it appears. As the teacher, you will add the first number of each box that the childs number appears on. The total is the childs number. Comments: I was amazed by this activity. I think the students will be blown away. Extension/Connection: I would introduce the idea of binary numbers.

Activity 6: I am, Who is?

Grade: 3rd Topic/Standard: Numbers/Operations, Communication, Algebra Procedures: The teacher creates and distributes cards that have the phrase, I am ____, Who is___?. The teacher starts by reading the first card. The person with the correct answer to the question then reads their card, and so on. The game will end when the answer to the last persons card is the teachers card. The teacher can challenge the students by putting a time limit on the game. Comments: I had never heard of this game until class. I think it is a good way to decrease recall time and to review facts in a non-tedious way. Extension/Connection: This activity could be connected to all content areas to review information previously learned.

Activity 7: Base 10 Blocks for Addition

Grade: 3rd-4th Topic/Standard: Numbers and Operations and Problem Solving Procedures: The students will receive varied addition problems. The students generate the answer using the base ten blocks (hundreds, tens, and ones). Comments: I feel this activity is an effective way to use concrete representation for teaching addition. Extension/Connection: The students can use base ten blocks when calculating multiplication, division, and subtraction.

Activity 8: Base 10 Blocks for Multiplication

Age: 3rd 4th Topic/Standard: Numbers and Operations and Problem Solving Procedures: The students will receive varied multiplication problems. The students generate the answer using the base ten blocks (hundreds, tens, and ones). Comments: I feel this activity is an effective way to use concrete representation for teaching multiplication. Extension/Connection: The students can use base ten blocks when calculating division, addition, and subtraction.

Activity 9: Frog Pond Game

Grade: 3rd Topic/Standard: Problem Solving, Data Analysis and Probability Procedures: The teacher will begin by prompting the students to get into pairs or the teacher can pair them off, if he/she wishes. The teacher needs to have 2 die, 12 small frogs, and a game board for each duo. Each frog will be placed on a numbered lily pad at the starting point of the game. Each roll the student add the number they get on each dice cube and move the corresponding frog one lily pad. The first partner to get their frog across all of the pads wins the game. The teacher then instructs the students to record which frog won each time in relation to the numbered lily pad that they had started on. After the first round, the teacher will ask the students to decided cohesively if they believe one frog has a better chance of winning each time. Do any of the frogs hardly move? Why does one frog seem to always be moving? Comments: I enjoyed this game. I think that this game can be adapted to work with younger and older grades. For the older grades I think it would need to be used as buffer or a downtime game. Extension/Connection: Once the students have decided on what frogs they think have a greater chance of winning, they can then begin to figure out the probability of it. You can also incorporate ratios because they are closely tied in with probability.

Activity 10: Startling Statistics

Grade: 4th Topic/Standard: Data Analysis and Probability, Problem Solving, Communication, and Connections Procedures: The teacher picks a topic that has statistical statements that correspond. The teacher instructs the students to take a card with a statement on it and have a friend tape it to their back. The teacher needs to prompt the students to not look at their card or the activity is not valid. Each student must speak with at least 5 friends and have them give an estimated percentage that they think is an appropriate answer for the question taped to their back. Once the students have recorded their answers, they then will need to guess what question is taped to their back in relation to the answers they have collected. Comments: This activity was interesting to me because I had never really thought about the statistics for the work force. It was actually eye opening. Extension/Connection: I would try to incorporate this lesson into another content area. For example if you are covering information in science about the Solar System, you can use that as a topic related to the phrases on the cards.

Activity 11: Frog Pond Game

Grade: 3rd + Topic/Standard: Data Analysis and Probability, Numbers and Operations, Problem Solving and Reasoning Procedures: The teacher or students will need to determine partners. Each pair will need a 10 small frogs and a game board with 10 small lily pads scattered on it. Each frog will need to be placed on a lily pad. One partner will need to take 1-2 frogs off the board each turn. The object to this game is to leave your partner with a number of frogs that is divisible by 3. You want your last turn to clear the board. Comments: This activity took a few rounds before I figured out the strategy. Extension/Connection: To make the game a bit harder for the upper grades, you can add more frogs. You may also want to add a frog that makes you have to put all of your frogs back on the board if you are forced to pick that frog.

Activity 12: Petals Around the Rose

Grade: 3rd 5th Topic/Standard: Problem Solving and Reasoning Procedures: The teacher will need to collect 6 die. The teacher rolls the dice and ask the students how many petals are around the rose. The teacher allows multiple guesses for many roles. The way to determine if the die is a rose is if the face has a dot in the middle and has dots around it. The faces that are considered roses are 3 and 5. Comments: It took me forever to figure this game out. But the class really enjoyed it. Extension/Connection: For students who figure out the solution quickly, the teacher can ask, What is the maximum number of petals that could occur in one roll? What is the minimum number? In how many different ways could zero petals be a result? What is the average number of petals per roll?

Activity 13: M & M Math

Grade: 2nd Topic/Standard: Data Analysis and Probability, Numbers and Operations, and Representation Procedures: The teacher may opt to break the class up into small grounds of 4-5 to minimize materials. Each student will estimate how many M & Ms are in the bag and record it. They will then estimate and record the number of each color in the bag. This portion of the activity is to be done individually. The group will then open the bag and count the total number of M & Ms and how many of each color are actually represented in the bag. The teacher will distribute an empty bar graph where the students will color in the actual number that corresponds with each color. Comments: I thought this would be a very interactive lesson to use in lower grades. Extension/Connection: For this activity, the students could graph their estimated number and their actual number beside each other in the graph. They could then determine the difference between. They could also calculate the probability of getting certain color each time.

Activity 14: Land and Sea

Grade: 4th Topic/Standard: Data Analysis and Probability, Geometry, and Measurement, Communication and Connections Procedures: The teacher will break the class into 2 or 3 large groups. The teacher instructs the students to form a circle with their group. The groups will toss an inflatable globe from person to person. The person who is catching the globe will read where their right thumb is placed, continent or ocean. One of the members will be the scribe and make a tally by each continent or ocean that is called out. The group will pass the globe till they have reached 100 tallies. Once all of the tallies are collected, each member will count them up for each continent or ocean and find the percentage of the total. Then the degree of a circle will be calculated by taking the % of the total X 360 degrees. The students will then take the degrees found and graph them in the circle below. Once all of the data and calculations have been collected the students will compare their findings to the actual findings. Comments: I think this is an excellent activity that connects math and geography. Extension/Connection: The students can break the locations down even more and find the percentage of the Earth each specific city or region occupies.

Activity 15: String Game Activity

Grade: 3rd + Topic/Standard: Data Analysis and Probability, Geometry, Problem Solving, Communication, Representation, and Reasoning Procedures: The teacher will need to make a Venn Diagram either on the chalkboard or using concrete materials. The teacher needs to have created a number of cards that have a single characteristic on them to place above each circle. The teacher will also need a variety of shapes in different colors and sizes for each small group. You start by using only 2 circles to create the diagram, one characteristic for each circle. The students take turns placing the varied shapes in the diagram in hopes of determining the solution. When an object is placed in the correct circle the teacher instructs them that they are correct. They then get another turn. Comments: This game confused me especially when we did it as a small group individually. I kept instructing the table incorrectly. Extension/Connection: For the older grades, I would incorporate more circles into the activity. This will force the students to focus more on detail.

Activity 16: Bubble Domes

Grade: 4th Topic/Standard: Data Analysis, Geometry and Measurement, Communication and Representation Procedures: The teacher instructs the students to break into small groups of 3-5. The students will need liquid bubbles, a straw, ruler, and the hangouts. The students will put the bubble solution directly on the tabletop. The students will try to blow on the solution and create domes. The teacher can help by prompting the students to make sure their straw is wet because the bubble will pop when it reaches a dry surface. Once the bubble dome pops, the students will measure the diameter, calculate the radius, and volume. The group will do 4 trials. Next, the students can see how concentric their bubble can be, this too will be documented 4 times. Comments: The class really loved this activity. It really took team work. Extension/Connection: The students can calculate the average diameter, radius, and volume of each dome then compare with the class.

Activity 17: Bears Playing in the Den

Grade: 2nd 3rd Topic/Standard: Data Analysis and Probability, Numbers and Operations Procedures: The teacher will need to break the class into small groups and supply each group with a variety of colored bears, 24. The students will mix up the bears before picking 6 from the bag. The students will then classify and count the selected bears and record the data in the table. After each recording, the bears are returned to the bag. The students will do 4 recordings. The group then estimates the number of each colored bear in the bag after reviewing the data. The students will then empty the bag and count each number of colored bears and record the actual number on their table. They will need to compare their prediction with the actual data and graph the results. Comments: I think this is a very strong representation of probability, prediction and comparison of data. Extension/Connection: I would try using other sampling configurations using samples of other sizes with population of varied sizes.

Activity 18: Very Tight Squeeze

Grade: 3rd-4th Topic/Standard: Problem Solving and Critical Thinking Procedures: The teacher will give the students a piece of computer paper and scissors. The teacher will instruct the students to cut a hole big enough for them to put their entire body through. Instruct the students to fold the piece of paper in half (hamburger style). Then, cut a rectangle along the fold, and then alternate directions until you get to the end of the paper. Finally have the students cut along the fold. The students will then be able to open up the paper and step through it. Comments: I was unable to figure this activity out until I was shown. It really forces students to think critically. Extension/Connection: I would have the students brainstorm with others near them to increase communication and partner work.

Activity 19: Reaction Time

Grade: 3rd- 4th Topic/Standard: Data Analysis, Numbers and Operations, Measurement, and Communication Procedures: Each student will need a partner. The teacher will instruct the one partner to hold the yardstick vertically and off the ground. The other partner will hold out their hand ready to catch the falling yardstick between their index finger and thumb. The students will determine how many inches the yardstick fell before being caught (Starting number number where the stick was caught). Each partner will do this activity 10 times recording each result in centimeters. The teacher will instruct the students to throw out their smallest and largest number. The students will then calculate mean, median, and mode for the remaining 8 results. Each partner will do this activity with their right and left hand. Once all of the results have been recorded, they will then look up the distance of the fall with the correlated time. The teacher will lead a discussion in whether the students think they are faster with a certain hand? Why? Comments: I will use this activity to ensure student engagement. Extension/Connection: The students can do this activity based on feel not sight and graph the results.

Activity 20: Cut A Card

Grade: 3rd + Topic/Standard: Measurement, Geometry, Problem Solving and Reasoning Procedures: The teacher will need to have a precut card glued to another index card for the students to explore. The teacher makes 3 cuts in the card, 2 on one side and 1 on the opposite. Distribute a card and scissors to the students and ask them to try and replicate the finished card. Comments: I actually was one of the only people to get this activity off the bat. I think it is an excellent way to use your observational and problem solving skills. Extensions/Connections: Instead of the teacher explaining how to complete the activity, I would ask the students who figured out the process to go around and help their friends. This will help with communication and explaining skills.