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The Rookie Teacher



DIY: Fraction Mosaic Board 0

Posted on February 19, 2015 by Allison Dyjach

In my math curriculum class in teacher’s college we were tasked with creating our own math resources that we would use in a classroom of our own. It took me a while to choose a concept to focus on, but being the crafty person that I am, I knew that I had to create something with colours and paper and moving parts–something that was exciting and hands on! After doing some research (I mean searching around Pinterest, really) I had come up with the topic that my math manipulative would cover: fractions! Fractions seem to be a tricky concept that start in Grade 1 and continue all the way until the intermediate grades, so I figured that I couldn’t go wrong with creating a math resource that could be tweaked to work with almost any grade and aid in one of the more abstract concepts in math.

So, I present to you…a fraction mosaic board (inspired by this activity found originally on Pinterest)! I loved that students got to have fun and create something and then find the math behind it, so I wanted to make my own reusable version of this project and share it with you! I promise, this board was very easy, affordable, and quick to make. It took me about 1 hour and cost $10. And I swear you can do this even if you wouldn’t call yourself a crafty person.


 

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Supplies:

  • Cookie sheet (can find at almost all dollar stores now!)
  • Stick on magnet strips
  • Construction paper (4-5 colours)
  • Scissors
  • Washi tape
  • Permanent marker

 

  1. Measure the width of the magnet strip and cut one strip of each colour of construction paper to match the size of the magnets.
  2. Cut the magnet strips into 3 inch long pieces (this will help flatten out the pieces and make adhering the construction paper much easier).IMG_0026
  3. Remove the tape from one magnet strip to reveal the sticky side.
  4. Take one strip of the construction paper and line up the end with the magnet strip. Stick the paper to the magnet.
  5. Cut remaining paper off of the end of the magnet strip. Then, cut the magnet into smaller mosaic pieces (I cut mine in about ½ inch long pieces to make squares)
  6. Repeat until you have the desired amount of mosaic pieces in each colour. I played around with the amounts a lot, but I wanted numbers that would be easy to divide and reduce so I ultimately used 16 blue, 12 red, 14 yellow, 10 green, and 8 orange = 60 pieces in total (tweaked a little bit from the picture below).                                                              IMG_0027IMG_0028IMG_0029
  7. Once mosaic tiles are complete, decorate the cookie sheet however you wish. I used Washi tape to create a table and permanent markers to create titles. In the left column, students can store their tiles, in the centre they can create a picture, and on the right they write their fractions that they made with a dry erase marker

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This can be modified and used for almost any grade when looking for practice with fractions. I also created an accompanying “instruction sheet” that I would most likely put right beside this to make it a centre. And then for older grades, I would suggest extending this activity with follow up questions. I created some questions at a grade 4 level dealing with reducing to lowest terms and looking at equivalent fractions. Accompanying questions could easily be made up for adding or subtracting the fractions, multiplying and dividing, and almost any other related fraction task.

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Feel free to send me a message or leave a comment if you would like a copy of the accompanying documents or have any questions about this DIY! If you have any other fraction, mosaics, or cookie sheet activities that you have done with your students, share them below–we always love to hear new ideas!

 

Allison Dyjach is a Faculty of Education student at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. Connect with her on Twitter @AllisonDyjach, or follow more of her Bachelor of Education experiences on Instagram @allisondyjach

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Resource Bank: The Classroom Tourist 0

Posted on January 16, 2015 by Allison Dyjach
Screen Shot 2015-01-16 at 1.10.08 PM

Just some of the wide variety of topics that are addressed on theclassroomtourist.net

Do you ever wish that you could take a week off to tour around schools and explore everyone else’s classrooms? Gather new ideas for seating plans, anchor charts, and bulletin boards? Well, the Limestone District School Board has made that (almost) possible! The Classroom Tourist (www.theclassroomtourist.net) blog is a relatively new project started by the Limestone District School Board K-12 Program Team, which features blog posts filled with innovative ideas and advice for Primary-Junior educators. The group travels throughout the LDSB to interview teachers or teaching teams and literally acts as a tourist in their classroom. They take pictures, ask many questions, and learn all about some of the teacher’s favourite teaching techniques and classroom setups. Also, the site is set up to easily search for tours based on a large set of tags, so you can find classrooms that specifically highlight math resources, new ways to create success criteria, and more.

If you are ever feeling a lack of inspiration or want to try a new classroom setup but don’t know where to begin, I highly recommend going on a few “tours,” they are sure to get the gears moving again.

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Aboriginal Education – Resource Bank 1

Posted on January 04, 2012 by Lauren

Sometimes the best resources are found in the unlikeliest of places…

I have a bit of a book buying problem, so the other day when I saw a sign for a book sale I made an impulse detour into the store. It was not at all what I expected. It looked like a regular downtown building on the outside but on the inside it was an old fashioned blacksmiths shop. The displays of books were mostly focused on local history; not exactly what I was looking for or needed. As I turned to leave a picture of a book seller posing with Walter Gretzky caught my attention. At the table was a man selling his book called Western Hooves of Thunder alongside a display of Six Nations Iroquois Program Teachers Guides (by Zig Misiak, Facebook). Teachers Guides – now that is something I can use!

Historical Society and Resources

photos: L.Hughes

I love this resource for a few reasons:

  1. Every Ontario school board has at least one copy available for teacher use (many have more than a dozen copies)
  2. It was recently designed in cooperation with First Nations educators and historians making the information accurate, current and culturally sensitive
  3. The program contains complete lesson plans which include stories, music, art and videos appropriate for any grade
  4. It meets many curriculum expectations and follows the First Nations, Metis, and Inuit Education Policy Framework
  5. It provides educators with limited First Nations knowledge with the information they need to feel comfortable teaching this subject material
  6. I feel strongly about the importance of Aboriginal education for all students AND I always love finding resources that contain quality lesson or unit ideas

If you are teaching elementary or secondary students in Canada, then this is a resource you should definitely look into. To locate a copy you can contact your school board, faculty of education or visit www.realpeopleshistory.com.

I know there are countless resources available and sometimes it can be overwhelming to determine which are valuable. Please use this space to share your favourites with fellow Rookie Teachers!

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