Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Math Treasure Chest & Sumdog

A couple of fun math resources this week to add to your resource collection!

First up is a website that would be great for the SmartBoard. It has "treasure chests" of different math manipulatives that you can use and adapt within your lesson on the spot. For example, clicking on the Money treasure chest allows you to stamp a certain amount of coins. Then you can have students count them, and it has an answer box that will show how much money you have drawn. There are also pattern & attribute blocks, a spinner, place value, fractions, and more.

I came across Sumdog in a blog post by Run Teacher Run. Here's what she has to say about the site and how she's using it with students:

"The website is called Sumdog, and the games are all FREE!!  There are 20 different games for the kids to pick from and there are 10 levels of skills.  As the teacher, you can pick specific skills or levels or just have them pick what they want. 

The kids have taken off and are playing at home, and beg to play at school!  Did I mention the games are FREE!?!?!  There is a teacher fee only if you want reports based on your students' progress and responses to questions. 

Motivation for the students is that it is game oriented, they get points for each game, and they also earn coins to upgrade their profile and add clothes to their avatar. As they earn points they are also able to earn "animal" status that depends on their point balance.  There are so many ways to keep them motivated!  

Motivation for the teachers is that they kids LOVE it!!  Also, they are able to do it at home and continue practicing their math skills beyond their classroom.  I also love that I can change the skills based on my students.  It is extremely easy to differentiate their skills on the program and add/subtract skills as needed.  The reports are also AMAZING for creating math groups.  I know many people are going toward the math workshop model, and this helps identify student strengths and weaknesses as you go through the classroom.  That data is great to see what they are capable of on the independent level!  I love it!"

Okay, I know that was a lot of reading, but hopefully her testimony will inspire you to check it out!

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