A Mathematical Advent Calendar

It’s always a challenge to keep up with homeschooling during the holiday season, but here’s a wonderful way to weave mathematics into your daily schedule: The Nrich Advent Calendars offer a fun math game or activity for every day in December until Christmas Eve. Click the image to visit the calendar that fits your student’s level.

Advent Calendar 2012 – Primary

Advent Calendar 2012 – Secondary

Welcome, TIME Readers!

[Photo by Luis Argerich via flickr.]

If you’ve come here from Bonnie Rochman’s article, Bedtime Math: A Problem a Day Keeps Fear of Arithmetic Away, thank you for dropping in! I have nearly 800 published posts about learning and teaching math, which can seem pretty overwhelming.

Here are a few good places to start:

  • Tell Me a (Math) Story
    What better way could there be to do math than snuggled up on a couch with your little one, or side by side at the sink while your middle-school student helps you wash the dishes, or passing the time on a car ride into town?
  • Homeschooling with Math Anxiety Series
    Our childhood struggles with schoolwork gave most of us a warped view of mathematics. Yet even parents who suffer from math anxiety can learn to enjoy math with their children.
  • How to Conquer the Times Table
    Challenge your student to a joint experiment in mental math. Over the next two months, without flashcards or memory drill, how many math facts can the two of you learn together? We will use the world’s oldest interactive game — conversation — to explore multiplication patterns while memorizing as little as possible.

I hope you enjoy your visit to my blog.

Math Teachers at Play #56 via Another Step To Take…

Would you like to learn about math books, games, puzzles, teaching tips, and more? Check out this month’s Math Teachers at Play:

Math Teachers at Play is a Blog Carnival for teachers, parents, homeschoolers and anyone else interested in learning and teaching mathematics.

According to the tradition of MTaP we start with some trivia related to edition number. Fifty six is a tetrahedral number, the sum of the first six triangular numbers. To model this number we laid out tiles to for the triangular numbers and then stacked them…

Click here to read the whole post.

10 Questions to Ask About a Math Problem

[Photo by CourtneyCarmody via flickr.]

It’s important to teach our children to ask questions, about math and about life. As I wrote in my series about homeschooling with math anxiety, “School textbooks only ask questions for which they know the answer. When homeschoolers learn to think like mathematicians, we will ask a different type of question.”

So I was delighted to see this new post from Bon Crowder: Ten Questions to Ask About a Math Problem. Click the link and read the whole thing!

Why a list of questions about math problems? Before creating them, I decided the questions should do the following:

  • Allow the student to dig in deeper to the math problem, and the math behind the problem.
  • Help the student to think about the problem in ways they wouldn’t normally.
  • Let the student get creative in thinking about the problem.

And of course doing these things regularly will train them to continue to do this with all math problems through their lives.

— Bon Crowder
Ten Questions to Ask About a Math Problem