Saturday, February 6, 2016

Time Saving Tip {Math Boxes}

Do you spend time every day passing out counters, dice, unifix cubes, or coins depending on the math lesson?

Do you always have to check and recheck to make sure you have the correct number of math manipulative for each student?

I did.

I did until a fellow teacher introduced me to the genius idea of Math Boxes. *angels singing Alleluiah chorus*

They are a HUGE time saver!

All of our most frequently used math supplies are stored in individual pencil boxes. Whenever we need manipulatives... each student grabs a box.

Need counters for ten frames or addition?

       Got 20 of them counted out - ready to go!

Need dice for (a million different) math games?


Cubes are for measuring, representing addition problems, patterning, and for playing one of our favorite math games - BUMP IT!

I love that I can say "Please bring a math box..." and we have everything we may need to start our math lesson.

I bought the small square containers at the dollar store - 10 for $1! They fit perfectly! One is for counters and the other for coins. At the beginning of the year the "coin purses" (or "wallets" for the boys) only have pennies. The other coins are added as we learn about them.

They stack nicely in the shelf where our math journals are stored. (Here they are pictured on top but they fit nicely in the shelf. I love how organized it looks now - compared to the random stuff I had stored in the shelf.)

I've thought about adding a laminated 100s chard and number line to the boxes as well.

Some ideas you try one year and think, "Probably won't do that again next year." Not these. I'm keeping these around.

How do you manage math manipulatives? I'd love to hear other ideas!

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