Monday, January 17, 2011

Money Practice

Near the beginning of the school year when I met with my second grade teachers to plan our technology time lessons, they asked for help reinforcing money counting skills with their students. While I could have just sent the students to a website to practice counting money, I chose instead to incorporate some student choice and collaboration into the lesson.

Using SMART Notebook software, I created two activities, one for counting coins and one for making change. For the counting money exercise, I had all the coins at the top of the page infinitely cloned. The students would drag down any combination of coins they wanted (student choice) and then write down the total. After they did that, they had to ask a neighbor to check their work. Thus, they were not only practicing counting their money, but their neighbor’s as well. I also cloned the page so the students could do ten pages of this activity.

The engagement and motivation were very high with this lesson due to the choices they got to make and also because they could pick any color pen or art pen to write their answer. Even my 8th grade son enjoys doing that! The collaboration added a game-like atmosphere to the activity. For students who finished this quickly, I had a second activity about making change. The premise was similar, but I had a different sentence written on each slide explaining what they bought and how much money they had.

Both activities are great for assessment purposes as the teacher can scroll through each student’s page and see their work. Both files are available for download. I emailed the files to my students, but you could also place them in their directory, or if neither option works in your district, the students can download them from the internet.

Image: 'One thing is not like the others'


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