We have our testing next week. Then we have about 2 weeks and 2 days left in the year. I'm struggling with enough activities to fill this time up. I would really like to do some math activities with them so that they can enjoy their last 2 weeks, maybe learn a few new things but also have fun. I do NOT want to review because that's all we've been doing the last month to get ready for the test.

Any fun projects or lessons the kids would enjoy? I'm thinking I'll have some logic puzzles for them one day and maybe some math riddles another day. But I'm stuck for all that time. Thanks!

I am not sure of your grade level but how about using some books that connect with skills you have taught and want to review. I am thinking of Spaghetti and Meatballs (Marilyn Burns, I think), How Much is a Million, etc... You could read a few with the students then have them create a book. You could produce books in various geometric shapes, etc..
Enjoy the time to do some of the creative things math allows!

My kiddos love to do calculator riddles. There are books out there, but you may be able to find some online.

Another fun activity is a math scavenger hunt. You could use magazines or newspapers to look for things like a percentage, a phone number, a time, etc. or find things in the room that are quadrilaterals, circles, measures.

Geometric pictures are fun. Have the students create pictures that have 3 triangles, 4 pentagons, 2 circles, 4 line segments, etc.

Oh that is a good book to use. It very interactive. You can have the students slove the problems as you read the book. After you read the book give them a problem to solve in small groups. You will love and so will the students.

You can take the Spaghetti and Meatball story and make the tables out of colored tile blocks and skittles or M & M's. The kids love it and enjoy a treat after the activity. Its fun to see them rearrange the tables as the guest arrive.

If you have a lot of patience you can have your kids make a tetrahedron (4 pod) kite out of straws, string and tissue paper. It's a great project and the kids do get the hang of it after they build the first pod. I cover the pods with color coordinated tissue paper and go outside to fly them. I have a lesson plan and some pictures, but I would need your e-mail to share them.

Lucky you that school is over so soon. I go until June 21st.

ALKA SELTZER ROCKETS. (you can get empty film canisters from ---one-hour photo ---Wal-mart ---photo shops) This is an outside project. Fuji film canister – the kind where the lid fits inside the canister. The others don’t work.
1. Optional: Make a cone and tape it to the top of the canister.
2. Fill the film canister ½ full with warm water.
3. Put in ¼ tablet of Alka Seltzer – no more
4. Snap the lid tightly into the canister, turn it over on a hard surface and stand back. The lid is on the hard surface. The sodium bicarbonate will make the canister launch into the air. If you vary the temperature of the water, your rocket will shoot to different heights. The warmer the water, the higher it will go.
This was a fun and educational projects.

Here are some fun math projects- both that I have tried and just heard of:

Checking account: I gave each student a job and they had to calculate how much they would earn, find an apartment and write a check for it, go grocery shopping, and then go shopping. They had a lot of fun with it. (4th grade)

Dream House: I am currently doing this with my 6th graders. They have to draw a floor plan for their dream house, label and find the area of each room, and then go shopping for carpet, etc. for their house. I just started it and they kids are really excited! (I got the idea from this board).

If you google "tetrahedron kite", some good websites come up with instructions. I'm not sure how close they are to Linda's plans. I liked this one with real photos:

I am actually planning on having the students teach. I am going to give them a list of math concepts we covered this year and allow them to choose one (they can work with a partner). They will then plan a 10-15 minute lesson on that concept. I will get them whatever supplies they need to use. This will be their "review" for a test at the end of the week that covers the entire year. It will take 2-3 days for each group to have their turn at being "Teacher for the Day".

I know you said NO REVIEW, but I am doing a project that is super. You could do it next year before testing. I let the kids get in small groups and create a board game on one of the chapters I assigned (so all chpaters were covered). The games they are making look great! I am giving all in-class time. I have so much free time to prepare report cards too. In the last few available days, we will work in stations playing the games. The kids are so excited to play that they are trying to make their games the best. This can be used in any subject! I am going to keep the best ones for games for next years class to play. Talk about a cheap way to get supplies!

Lace 3 plastic straws together.
Tie off in a triangle. (good tight knot)

Lace 2 more straws and tie them to the triangle (another good tight knot)to form a rhombus.
Lace one more straw on a short string and tie (tightly)the whole pod together to form a pyramid. DO this process four times - 6 straws per pod.
Place the straw pyramid into a tissue cutout of the shape of the pods (flip the elongated pod to make your pattern but add a margin for glueing.
Set 2 pyramids side by side and tie together.

Add a third pyramid to form a triangle.
Place the final pyramid atop the other 3 point to point. Tie off at the three points for your tetrahedron.
Use a 3 point harness tied to a long roll of kite string. Fly and have fun!

I did this twice with a second grade class with parent help so third should not be hard. It takes about a week to complete the projet from start to finish, but parents can be great knot tiers and move the project along. I do this in small groups while the rest of the class works on other incomplete projects, BUT no one take a kite home until everyone completes the project. I put the direction in a previous note and someone also put out an internet site to use. Both are easy to complete.
Good luck! I finish June 20th
Linda

I had my students do tessellations. They had to bring a pattern, test it to see if it would tessellate, then trace their pattern on a half-page of poster board. After that, they had to color their tessellation. They loved it! It kept them busy for about 3 days to a week. I made a rubric to grade them and gave more points for the difficulty level of the pattern, the number of colors they used, whether it had any gaps or overlaps, and the use of their time and materials. I showed them examples of tessellations from google images. Good luck!

You said you planned on having a day of logic puzzles. You should use a Greg Teng book like The Grapes of Math or any of his other books. He asks the children to solve the problems posed as riddles. My kids love them.

The kite lesson, lesson plan, worksheet, instructions, etc. can all be found in the book "The Sky's the Limit, with Math and Science" from AIMS Activities. The book also has a number of other planes, kites, etc. Great for middle school!

I was going to ask how you could be out so early in the year, and then noticed the date of your original post! I'm amazed how a post can go on for almost three years and still have new, valid information!

I am doing the same thing in my 6th grade classroom. However, after the students are finished with their poster tessellations, if there is time, they are allowed to transfer the design to a ceiling tile. Using poster paint and ceiling tiles from a home improvement store this makes for a really bright an colorful room. Also, it is a great way to motivate the next year of students because they all want to be able to do the tessellation project at the end of the year.

A fun project I do at the end of the year is an airplane throwing contest. The kids design their own paper airplanes, then we fly them to determine how many feet they travel. We make a bar graph of the results.

We talk about the different designs, and why some designs allow for faster flight.

I am surprised that no one suggested the naked egg drop. It takes time to build it. And you have to go outside to test it. My students spent time getting it just right. The project has specs so students are attentive to what they are doing. Google Naked Egg Drop for this activity.

We also missed using tesselations to create quilt patterns. You can use materials like paper if you do not have cloth. I put al of the pattens together to make a class quilt for the following year.

I teach this lesson every year to my 6th graders. I originally got it from a teacher where I work, but I added a lot to it making it very realistic and detailed. My local bank provided me with checkbook registers and I just printed blank checks off the internet. The parents really liked it because the students could see and appreciate how much money it takes to pay bills, clothe, feed and take general care of your family and finances. If anyone is interested, let me know and I can download it here.

Diane C

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