How to make the most of extra math minutes with quick, easy-to-implement games.
Group Math Games, Centers, and Stations
When supporting your striving students, consider using Mystery Mental Math in a small-group setting and trying the following differentiation strategies:
#1 - Provide manipulatives beyond the digit cards. Base ten blocks, counting cubes, and other similar items that can be used as hands-on tools to support their computation.
#2 - Read the clues slowly. Read each clue twice.
#3 - Model the operation on the board after (or while) students solve it mentally.
#4 - Limit the number of clues for each mystery and have the students share their answers after two steps rather than three.
Likewise, the game can easily be adapted and used as an enrichment activity during small-group instruction time for your advanced students. The following suggestions will add an extra challenge!
#1 - Read each clue only once.
#2 - Reduce wait time between each clue.
#3 - Discourage using digit cards for each step. Instead, encourage your advanced students to solve the equations mentally and only use the digit cards to display their answers.
#4 - Have students create their own clue cards to use with each other.
Don't miss out on math minutes! Print once and use often! This new ten-minute math game can be used any time you have a few free moments.
Ready to make the most of your math minutes? Whether you have some extra time or barely ten minutes to spare, edHelper's math game has a fun and engaging math solution for you. Mystery Mental Math is a quick, hands-on game that can be played in multiple ways. Perfect for whole-group, small-group, or even one-to-one instruction, this game asks students to mentally follow math clues and use digit cards to represent their answers. To play, each student will need one set of digit cards numbered 0-9. Teachers need a stack of clue cards. As teachers read the clues aloud, students either manipulate their digits step by step or solve the equations mentally and then use the digit cards to show their answers.
Options for Implementation - Whole Group
Prep one way for multiple ways to play! No matter how you implement Mystery Mental Math, plan to print one set of teacher clue cards. Additionally, each player will need one set of digit cards.
Mystery Mental Math can be used any time as a whole-group game. It can be your lesson warm-up, part of an exit ticket, or a good way to use a few extra minutes before recess. This is not only great number and operation review, but it can also serve as a quick formative assessment. As you read the clues, you can ask students to show you their answers after each step or wait and ask them to use their digit cards to display their final answer.
For ease of use, you may want to consider having students keep their digit cards in plastic bags stored in their desks. This will allow you to play a few quick rounds anytime without needing to pass out materials!
Centers or Stations
Alternatively, this game can easily be set up as a math center or station. When set up as a center, each student will use their digit cards and recording sheet. Prep includes setting up the station with one clue card per player. Students will solve the problems on the first clue card, record their answers on their recording sheets, and then move on to the next open card. This can allow for collaboration if students opt to work together; it can also provide the opportunity to work individually at their own pace. Additionally, students can scoot from desk to desk as they work through the clues, or they can stay in one spot and work through one stack of clue cards at a time.
Keep Kids Active in Math in Your Class
It's no secret that students learn best when they are engaged and having fun. Quick math games, like Mystery Mental Math, are the perfect instructional solution for purposeful yet playful activities. You can also use math worksheets to provide review of skills being learned. Hoping to engage your students in math? Print and use this quick and easy game to make the most of any open math minutes in your day.
Math Learning Centers