Math Snacks has so many quality implementation resources, you'll certainly not go wanting for ideas! Best practice planning tips on the site suggest integration as part of larger units, lesson development sequence including a first viewing for entertainment, a second to note vocabulary, and a third for integration ideas. Suggestions include asking students to brainstorm key math concepts and vocabulary for starters, and much more. Most impressive are the "teacher's videos," presented by a teacher who outlines tips for each product in clear, meaningful terms and who is shown in action implementing the material in the classroom. A newer feature includes integration with existing teacher dashboards or portals, such as Edmodo.com, allowing teachers to access Math Snacks within a framework for lesson planning, assessing, and reporting. Beyond the amazing resources, the content encourages a love of teaching through statements like, "Be open to the wonderful ways the students may approach each problem."Continue reading Show less
Math Snacks packs concrete and thorough treatments of the basics of ratio, proportion, scale, number line, coordinate graphing, large and negative number place value, and some measurement into six videos, five games, and three overlapping iOS apps. Two of the games, Pearl Diver and Ratio Rumble, are available for purchase as stand-alone iOS apps. A free app that includes all animations is also available. Kids watch videos reminiscent of "Schoolhouse Rock" (sans catchy tunes) or play single-player games. Activities can be done with or without teacher guidance; kids can follow up with learner's guides (workpages).
"Ratio Rumble" sucks kids into the mathematics of ratio by grouping as many like potion symbols as possible in adjacent sequence, all within a tongue-in-cheek, Pokemon-like battle world. The "Scale Ella" video embeds scale, proportion, and associated calculations into a superhero narrative with comic relief about the villain Scaleo, who changes scale for evil. Teachers enjoy free access to comic versions, teacher's guides, best practice teaching tips, Common Core and NCTM alignment, plus CCSS Mathematical recommended practices.
Math Snacks charges middle school mathematical concepts with energy, humor, and ease. You'll appreciate the clear presentation and accompanying resources that support in-class learning with best practices recommendations for each and every product. Math Snacks is especially appropriate for struggling, reluctant, or ELL learners. There are a few rough spots in the student workpages (Learner's Guides), the range of topics is on the narrow side, and some assessment tools would really complete the package. While a teacher dashboard and progress tracking are absent from the interface, researchers at the New Mexico State University are tracking performance and testing efficacy, perhaps with some of these considerations in mind.
Game levels are accessible and ramp up slowly yet steadily. Challenge is always present, but tasks are never overly difficult or impossible. Videos keep kids on their toes with sophisticated and baser wit all rolled into one. Math Snacks is a welcome addition to the accessible math pantheon.
Key Standards Supported
Use a pair of perpendicular number lines, called axes, to define a coordinate system, with the intersection of the lines (the origin) arranged to coincide with the 0 on each line and a given point in the plane located by using an ordered pair of numbers, called its coordinates. Understand that the first number indicates how far to travel from the origin in the direction of one axis, and the second number indicates how far to travel in the direction of the second axis, with the convention that the names of the two axes and the coordinates correspond (e.g., x-axis and x-coordinate, y-axis and y-coordinate).
Number And Operations In Base Ten
Add, subtract, multiply, and divide decimals to hundredths, using concrete models or drawings and strategies based on place value, properties of operations, and/or the relationship between addition and subtraction; relate the strategy to a written method and explain the reasoning used.
Number And Operations—Fractions
Compare two decimals to hundredths by reasoning about their size. Recognize that comparisons are valid only when the two decimals refer to the same whole. Record the results of comparisons with the symbols >, =, or <, and justify the conclusions, e.g., by using a visual model.
Understand a fraction as a number on the number line; represent fractions on a number line diagram.
Represent a fraction 1/b on a number line diagram by defining the interval from 0 to 1 as the whole and partitioning it into b equal parts. Recognize that each part has size 1/b and that the endpoint of the part based at 0 locates the number 1/b on the number line.
Represent a fraction a/b on a number line diagram by marking off a lengths 1/b from 0. Recognize that the resulting interval has size a/b and that its endpoint locates the number a/b on the number line.
Explain equivalence of fractions in special cases, and compare fractions by reasoning about their size.
Understand two fractions as equivalent (equal) if they are the same size, or the same point on a number line.
Express whole numbers as fractions, and recognize fractions that are equivalent to whole numbers. Examples: Express 3 in the form 3 = 3/1; recognize that 6/1 = 6; locate 4/4 and 1 at the same point of a number line diagram.
Ratios And Proportional Relationships
Understand the concept of a ratio and use ratio language to describe a ratio relationship between two quantities. For example, “The ratio of wings to beaks in the bird house at the zoo was 2:1, because for every 2 wings there was 1 beak.” “For every vote candidate A received, candidate C received nearly three votes.”
Understand the concept of a unit rate a/b associated with a ratio a:b with b ≠ 0, and use rate language in the context of a ratio relationship. For example, “This recipe has a ratio of 3 cups of flour to 4 cups of sugar, so there is 3/4 cup of flour for each cup of sugar.” “We paid $75 for 15 hamburgers, which is a rate of $5 per hamburger.”1
Use ratio and rate reasoning to solve real-world and mathematical problems, e.g., by reasoning about tables of equivalent ratios, tape diagrams, double number line diagrams, or equations.
Make tables of equivalent ratios relating quantities with whole- number measurements, find missing values in the tables, and plot the pairs of values on the coordinate plane. Use tables to compare ratios.
Solve unit rate problems including those involving unit pricing and constant speed. For example, if it took 7 hours to mow 4 lawns, then at that rate, how many lawns could be mowed in 35 hours? At what rate were lawns being mowed?
Find a percent of a quantity as a rate per 100 (e.g., 30% of a quantity means 30/100 times the quantity); solve problems involving finding the whole, given a part and the percent.
Use ratio reasoning to convert measurement units; manipulate and transform units appropriately when multiplying or dividing quantities.
Recognize and represent proportional relationships between quantities.
Decide whether two quantities are in a proportional relationship, e.g., by testing for equivalent ratios in a table or graphing on a coordinate plane and observing whether the graph is a straight line through the origin.
Identify the constant of proportionality (unit rate) in tables, graphs, equations, diagrams, and verbal descriptions of proportional relationships.
Represent proportional relationships by equations. For example, if total cost t is proportional to the number n of items purchased at a constant price p, the relationship between the total cost and the number of items can be expressed as t = pn.
Explain what a point (x, y) on the graph of a proportional relationship means in terms of the situation, with special attention to the points (0, 0) and (1, r) where r is the unit rate.
Use proportional relationships to solve multistep ratio and percent problems. Examples: simple interest, tax, markups and markdowns, gratuities and commissions, fees, percent increase and decrease, percent error.
The Number System
Understand a rational number as a point on the number line. Extend number line diagrams and coordinate axes familiar from previous grades to represent points on the line and in the plane with negative number coordinates.
Understand signs of numbers in ordered pairs as indicating locations in quadrants of the coordinate plane; recognize that when two ordered pairs differ only by signs, the locations of the points are related by reflections across one or both axes.
Find and position integers and other rational numbers on a horizontal or vertical number line diagram; find and position pairs of integers and other rational numbers on a coordinate plane.
Understand ordering and absolute value of rational numbers.
Solve real-world and mathematical problems by graphing points in all four quadrants of the coordinate plane. Include use of coordinates and absolute value to find distances between points with the same first coordinate or the same second coordinate.