Monday, September 3, 2012

Made 4 Math: Splat!

I love, love, love this week's #Made4Math!  It is a variation of @K8nowak 's Flyswatter game in which students get up and out of their desks for a rowdy math review.
Focus area for me: Factoring, but it can be anything you are studying.
Materials needed:
2 flyswatters per review center ( I ran 2 centers - one on each side of the room, so I used 4 flyswatters in all.)
Tape to mark a starting line and to hold the equations on the wall.
Equations (For this activity, I created equations with 2, 3, and 4 terms.  Some were harder than others, so I put a tiny "1" on the fly's wings to remind me to post those questions first.)  I added the remaining equations after the students had a chance to work through the first set (And since I teach high school...I actually handed the roll of tape to one student at each center and passed out the equations to the rest of the kids.  They placed them on the boards.)

How to play:
Students were divided into two groups; we were running 2 review centers at once.  From the 2 groups, we further divided into teams.  Each team member lined up behind their team captain facing the wall of equations to form a straight line behind the "starting point" marked by the tape on the floor.  I stood in the middle of the room on a desk safe from swinging swatters:)
I called out descriptions like "factor by removing a common factor" and "difference of squares".  As the students became more comfortable with the game, the clues became more specific like "in this equation solved by factoring by grouping 'x + 3' can be factored".  When the students spotted the equation that fit the description, they slapped it with their flyswatter.  At times, there was more than one equation that would fit the description and if each team hit a valid response, both would get a point.  If both teams went for the same equation, the first to hit the correct answer won the point.  Caution: It gets competitive!

After each student had several turns, I passed out 3 markers per group of 5 students.  The students with markers set to work factoring a problem of their choice on their side of the playing board.  As each student completed a problem, they passed their marker to the next person in line.  The first group to finish factoring all of the equations on their side of the board had bragging rights for the day, but as you can see from the video...that didn't stop the rest of the groups from working to solve them all.


Gembis of the Gembi Family said...

That is great stuff! I will definitely "borrow" this for my freshman algebra classes.

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