## Monday, October 27, 2014

### October: Art & Math Classroom Activities

I'm back from a brief trip to Disneyland with my husband and youngest two boys.

That's me in the front seat at Space Mountain = sheer terror. Don't let the closed eyes on the kiddo fool you. He was fearless...the only one in our family who wanted to do California Screamin' again. Apparently we have a roller coaster kid on our hands.

Today we're taking it easy. A little soccer. A little Halloween art for Fearless and I. We're doing a fall version of Poetry & 3-D Art for Every Season* with a 3-D Halloween display and diamante poem:

Halloween
Spooky, Dark
Howling, Creeping, Blowing
Pumpkins, Ghosts, Spiders, Webs
Dinging, Tricking, Treating
Fun, Sugary
Holiday

I love how these 3-D projects look on display. And the artwork inspires kids to write, write, write! The fall season could feature scenes with leaves, corncobs, blowing trees, scarecrows...anything from autumn.

*This has been updated on TPT to reflect the photos shown here! On sale til Halloween. :) If you've previously purchased this product, an updated version will automatically be available to you.

The artwork inspired Fearless to write some of his own poems:

HALLOWEEN
IS NOW HERE
SO NOW GHOST
WILL APPEAR
SO WATCH OUT
THERE MIGHT
BE ONE RIGHT
OVER THERE
(...he said it's all in caps!)

IT'S THE RIGHT
SEASON TO RAKE
LEAVES BECAUSE
IT IS FALL AND
YOU KNOW WHAT
IS IN FALL
HALLOWEEN
IS IN
FALL

October Math
Another favorite October activity? Skittles: Fractions, Estimation & Graphing. Grab some candy while it's on sale this week and you're set for math!

Remember to graph your Halloween candy...and don't miss Tamara's ideas for math-inspired spider webs!

## Thursday, October 9, 2014

### Have Multiple & Factor Confusion?

Kids sometimes find it confusing to differentiate between multiples & factors. Here are a few visuals that I've found helpful:

Multiple: the product of a given number and another number.

We could show this on a number line:

To find the multiples of 3, we can start with our given number (3) and then multiply it by 2 (6), by 3 (9), by 4 (12), and so on...

We also see multiples represented by tile (Number Pieces):

1 group of 3 tile = 3
2 groups of 3 tile = 6
3 groups of 3 tile = 9
4 groups of 3 tile = 12

We can also use a visual model to investigate factors.

Factors: numbers that, when multiplied together, result in a product.

One of my favorite ways to do this? Lay out the product with tile (Number Pieces). Let's look at 12:

Use the 12 tile to form as many rectangular arrays as possible. The dimensions produce factors of the number. Here we can see arrays with dimensions of:

1 x 12
2 x 6
3 x 4

(Note: When using this visual model, prime numbers are also easy to distinguish: if it's prime, only one rectangular array--a 1 by the number--is possible.)

Why Do We Care?
My son is currently taking AP Calculus. He just popped in my office, saw what I was doing and said, "For us, finding factors is just one tiny step in a huge process. We do it all the time." Factors are a part of  higher level math! And, at a slightly lower level, students frequently use factors when working with fractions...not to mention (!) multiplication.

I just created Fold It!...Factors & Multiples, a new set of flap books (Venn Diagrams & Shutter Folds) for students to compare and contrast factors and multiples. When complete, pages make a nice addition to student math journals. Alternate versions (different number combinations as well as blank copies) are included to allow for many uses: differentiation, exit slips, homework, notebook pages, math stations, etc.

The new set is also available as part of a bundled Multiples & Factors Flap Pack that includes the popular Flap Books "Present" Multiples & Factors (pictured right).

As always, new products (& bundles) are introduced with a sale price.

More Ideas
Looking for more ideas? Here are some of my favorites from around the web:
• Flap Books & Online Games - in this blog entry, I share photos of flap books we made and link to a variety of games on the web
• Factor & Multiple Anchor Charts with Student-Made Posters from Young Teacher Love - both are awesome.
• Online Venn Diagram - create your own Venn Diagram to compare factors & multiples (example, right)
• Multiple Mummy - kids use adding machine tape to make multiple strips and turn their teacher into a mummy.
Tune back for a multiple/factor game that you can play with any size group, 1 to 100!
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