Math and Problem Solving

Here is a Brief outline explaining the goals of our units in everyday math:


Unit 1 -

Unit 2 -

Unit 3 -

Unit 4 -

Unit 5 -

Unit 6 -

Unit 7 -

Unit 8 - more money practice, place value, making change up to a dollar, equal parts and fractions

Unit 9 - number grid short cuts, minute math, adding/subtracting 2 digit numbers, more fractions

Unit 10 - YEAR END REVIEW - We usually don't have time for this last unit, so I tell parents that this is a good way to keep the kids "entertained" during those days in the summer when they say - "Ma - I'm bored!"

Homelinks  still remain an integral part of your home-school connection.  Review each one as your child received them, and you'll be fully informed.  Of course, please contact me if you have any questions.


Each week, we continue to work on problems.  Some are word problems like the example below where the children need to just think about solving this mentally and raising their hand with the answer.  Then we discuss how they got the answer.

  Veronica saved marbles.  She got 5 new ones for her birthday and her dad gave her 7 of his that he had when he was a boy.  She already had 14 in her marble bag.  How many marbles does she have now?

Other problems take a longer time, where the children need to write down the answer, the strategy, draw a picture or use a table and tell if they can make a connection or extend the problem in another way.  Click on rubrics to see how these are scored.

We begin the year by learning about diagrams.  The children need to draw a picture to solve the problem. The need to use words to answer the question, use at least 2 math words in their explanation and there picture, or representation needs to reflect the problem.

For example: 

Sam sees 2 marbles on the floor and 5 marbles in the jar.  How many marbles does he see altogether?

Students need to tell me or write:  "I need to find out how many marbles altogether.  I will use a diagram.  Then they need to draw the picture and label it:        5


                1                    2                       3                                        

                                                                                    6                    7

                    marbles on floor                marbles in jar

"There are 7 marbles altogether.

Students can also give a math model to prove their answer:   2  + 5 + 7

Sample problems to solve at home:

Tim has 5 fish in his fishbowl.  He saved up enough money to buy 10 more.  How many fish will he have altogether?


Peg loves to collect rocks.  She has 3 in her collection.  Her uncle gave her 5 more for her birthday.  How many rocks does she have now?


Ann helped her mother bake cookies.  They baked 25 cookies.  Then they each ate 2.  How many cookies are left?

After the holiday break, we begin to learn more about using a table.  So instead of drawing a picture to get the answer, they need to organize a table.  Here is an example:

Kelly was collecting rocks.  On Monday she found 1 rock, on Tuesday she found 2 rocks, on Wednesday she found 3 rocks.  If this pattern continues, how many rocks will Kelly find on Saturday?  How many rocks will she have altogether?

Days Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday  


Throughout the year, the children have worked on estimating.  Some of these tasks have gone home, such as the block designs and others have been designed so that our students in K-2 have tried to figure out what number of objects have been in a jar.  the classroom which comes the closest gets a class prize and Mrs. Sullivan announces the room as the winner.