Math Icebreakers



At the beginning of the year, you want to create a sense of community.  That each classroom should be their own little microcosm, but sometimes they are not, sometimes schools are so large that all students don't know the names of people in their class or their entire school (this was shocking to me).

Math Icebreakers are a great way to get students interested in math in the first few days of school.  But, before I get started on a few of my favorites, I am going to give you a list of links, not too many, but im not going to list 300 icebreaker games you can play with your students in one blog post.

http://www.educationworld.com/a_lesson/lesson/lesson074.shtml (Good)
http://adulted.about.com/od/teachers/tp/warmupsforlessonplans.htm (Better)
http://www.ehow.com/list_6559009_math-icebreaker-games.html (Great)
http://tips.atozteacherstuff.com/220/icebreaker-activities-getting-acquainted/ (Good)

Math About Me
Students create Math About Me sheets. The Math About Me information might include birthday, address numbers, phone number, sports number, favorite number, number of pets, number of people in the family, etc. When the students gather together to share their numbers, they see what numbers they have in common with their classmates, and everyone learns a little bit about one another. The numbers are then used to make a Math About Me poster. I take a snapshot of each child for the center of the poster.

Fizz Buzz
Is a fast pace and silly way to help kids relax, and forces players to quickly analyze a number in several different ways.  It helps push certain multiplication facts in to long-term memory by associating them with strong emotions.  Students stand in a cirlce and one student begins by picking a number from 1 to 99.  The next peron in the circle says the next number in the sequence, and so on.  However if a number has a five in it or is divisible by 5, the person must say "fizz" instead of the number.  And if a number has a seven in it or is divisible by seven, the person must say "buzz".  For example the number 35, you would say "fizz buzz". You continue until you run in to a mistake.

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