Nikki's Blog

helping teachers teach math

Multiplying Decimnals Vlog

I had a teacher request for a mini-lesson on multiplying with multi-digit decimals using base 10 blocks and area model so here it is! Understanding this concept is really challenging (the procedure without understanding is actually really easy). Please feel free to send this link home to parents...

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How Do I Assess This New Math Curriculum?

This is probably the most frequent question I get about mid-way through a professional development session on teaching math conceptually. Not only are we tasked with teaching math differently, but also with assessing math differently. Did I mention we first have to actually learn the math...

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Basic Number Sense Part 3: One and Two More/Less and Rounding

This is the third blog post in a series about building number sense foundation. I want to ensure that you have read the previous two as this post assumes you understand why you need to go ALL the way back to where students currently are to build that solid foundation as well it assumes that you...

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Basic Number Sense Part 2: Partitioning and Benchmarking to 5 & 10

In the last blog post I provided a rationale for why we must go ALL the way back to where students are at in order to help them build a solid foundation. If you have not read that post, I urge you to do so before reading this one as this is a continuation of that idea. Partitioning is known by...

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Building Basic Number Sense Part 1: Subitizing

One of the hardest things to navigate when teaching math in a classroom is the huge range of skill levels of the students. I see this daily; in a grade 6 class there are some students who don’t know ‘friends of 10’ nor any strategies for adding and subtracting besides finger counting and stacking...

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Number Talks

Number Talks are a fantastic 5-15 minute daily practice that are useful for all ages.Here is a 30 minute vlog on how and why to use them to get you started. Number Talks are designed to improve fluency for kids (especially our intermediate and middle school kids who still aren't fluent) AND they...

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Committing Assumicide

Full disclosure: I am just as guilty as anyone of making assumptions! I catch myself and hear it in my colleagues all the time: “my students won’t be able to do that”, “Johnny isn’t able to do this task because he’s way too low”, “this is the best way to teach this concept because it’s what I was...

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Diagnostic Assessments: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Hi All, I’ve received some emails recently from teachers asking about Diagnostic Assessments, so I’m going to dedicate this blog to my experiences and thoughts on these, what I have tried, the issues I have had and what has worked well. I have also included links to download pre-assessments for...

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Embrace the "New" Math: Information on Why the Old Way Really Isn't the Best Way

My First Vlog! "Embrace the "New" Math: Information on Why the Old Way Really Isn't the Best Way" " <

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Back to School Part 2

Hi All! Happy first week – I know this week feels like a crazy whirlwind, especially compared to the relative calm of summer (for me anyways). Last post I wrote about setting up your scope and sequence as a first step to have a well-connected, logical flow of content and competencies. This post...

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