sign in

Don’t have an account? Register now.

e-mail address:
password:
  cancel
  Forgot your password?
Click here to be e-mailed a new password.
October Teacher’s Corner > Family Math Night
Teacher's Corner - Back to October's edition >

Family Math Night


Encouraging the school-to-home connection is essential in keeping students on the right track. With Family Math Night, parents are invited to join their kids at school for an evening of hands-on math activities and fun!


Planning & Preparation
Organization and planning are key to a successful schoolwide family event. Follow these handy tips to prepare for your Family Math Night:
  • Before scheduling your event, obtain permission from your school administrator. You will also need to choose a location—preferably a large area like the school cafeteria—and work with staff to find a date that is available after school hours.
  • Consider asking other teachers to help out with the event. Circulate a sign-up sheet among faculty members, and encourage them to volunteer to coordinate game setup or to help ensure that the activities run smoothly. You may even want to partner with your school’s Parent-Teacher Association to sponsor a family dinner or light refreshments before the event.
  • Use this printable Family Math Night Invitation, or create your own invitation for parents. Be sure to send out the invitations at least a few weeks in advance so parents have plenty of time to mark it on their calendars! Choose a family-friendly time for your event—one that’s late enough in the day to allow working parents to attend but early enough in the evening that kids aren’t out too late, such as 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Be sure to give careful thought and consideration to the activities you use. You will find a list of games and activities below, or you can come up with your own. Just be sure to plan a variety of cooperative activities that are age-appropriate—and fun!
Setting Up
Be sure you have plenty of space and enough tables and chairs for all participants. You can post simple instructions at each station to make it easy for families to complete the activity. (We’ve included handy printable instructions with the activity ideas below.) Finally, set up a sign-in table with ready-to-make name tags, and have volunteers at the table ready to greet and direct families.


The Main Event
Here is a description of math stations and activities you can use for your Family Math Night, or you can add your own ideas to create even more options! Welcome parents when they arrive and direct them to a station. Post someone at each station to explain and model the activity. After 15 minutes, have participants rotate to the next station.
 

Go Fish!
Children will practice numeral recognition with this fun-to-play fishing game! First, set up a small inflatable kiddie pool. Then, print three to four sets of these Number Fish. Attach a paper clip to each fish, and scatter the fish in the pool. Cut a piece of string about 18 inches long and tape it to the end of a small wooden dowel. Then tie a small magnet onto the loose end of the string to create a “fishing pole.” (Make four to five fishing poles so more than one child can play at the same time.) To play, ask a parent to call out a number from 1 to 10, and have the child use the magnet on the end of the pole to “fish” for that number!


Draw, Count & Eat
Remove the face cards from a deck of cards so that only aces and numbers 2–10 remain. Use the aces to represent the number 1. (Set up four to five separate decks in this way, and place each deck into its own zip-close bag.) Place mini marshmallows or coated chocolate candies in a bowl, and then place the deck of cards face down on the table. Game play is easy! Simply have players select a card, count out the corresponding number of marshmallows or candy pieces…and eat!


Hop to It!
This fun math activity helps young learners practice counting—and develop gross motor skills! (Plus, they’ll love watching moms and dads hop alongside them!) Simply draw a straight-line hopscotch path onto a long sheet of butcher paper, or use colored craft tape to create the path directly on the floor. (Set up three to four separate paths so several families can play at the same time.) Number each square from 1–10. Players simply take turns tossing a coin or pebble onto the path, hop to the square, and pick it up!


Strings of Fun
Cut lengths of string (long enough to be used as necklaces) and place colored plastic beads into a large bowl. Have parents and students work together to make colorful necklaces in simple patterns—such as red, orange, yellow, red, orange, yellow; or blue, green, blue, green. Encourage parents to point out how the order of colors repeats to make a pattern. Let the children wear their necklaces home!


Shake, Shake, Shake
For this game you’ll need an egg carton and at least two different beans or counters. Use a marker to label the bottom of each egg compartment with a number from 112. (Mark four to five cartons in this way, so several players can play at once.) Each player selects a bean or counter and places it inside the carton. The players close the carton, shake it and then open it to see where the beans landed. The player whose bean landed on the highest number wins!

Add It Up!
This game is a great way to reinforce early addition and graphing skills! All you need is the printable Roll, Add & Graph chart, crayons and two dice. Have up to four players take turns rolling the dice and adding the numbers together. After each turn, the player uses a crayon to shade the chart to represent the sum. Play continues and the players keep adding to their own parts of the graph. The first player to reach the top of the chart (40 points) wins!


Tangram Tasks
Children practice shape recognition with this fun tangram activity! Simply download the Tangram Template printable—it features a template for a set of tangrams and three picture-matching cards. Use the template to make several sets of tangrams using sturdy construction paper, or provide your own. Place each set into a separate zip-close bag. Set the tangrams and several copies each of the picture-matching cards on the table. Have students and parents work together to use all seven pieces to make a square. Then invite them to continue working together to complete the picture-matching cards. An answer key is provided.


Number Detectives
Build number sense with an interactive guessing game! Print several of these Guess My Number! Game Riddles and this Hundreds Chart to use to help find the answers. (Cut along the dotted lines and fold the answers back under the paper so that they are hidden. Once players guess the number, the answer can be revealed.) Players just take turns giving clues to each other until the other player guesses the number. You can even create a few of your own for even more number fun!


Line Jumping
Use masking tape to make three to four large number lines on the floor, and then label numbers from 1 to 20, spaced about a foot apart. Print these addition and subtraction Flash Cards with facts to 20. (Make four to five separate card sets, and place each set into its own zip-close bag.) One player will draw a flash card and read the equation while the other player uses the number line to find the solution. For example, if the equation on the flash card is 6 + 8 = ?, then the player will stand on the number 6 and jump forward 8 spaces to land on the correct answer—14!


Telling Time Match-Up
Print and cut apart these Telling Time Match-Ups, and have players spread the cards out face down to begin the game. (Prepare four to five separate card sets, and place each set into its own zip-close bag.) Players take turns flipping over two cards at a time to find an analog clock and a digital clock that show the same time. If players find a matching pair, then they can keep it. If not, they flip the cards back over. Play continues until all matching cards are found. The player who collects the most pairs wins the game!

Coordinate Score Four!
Using a four-quadrant coordinate grid, players try to be the first to plot four coordinate pairs in a row! Print and photocopy the Coordinate Grid. Players take turns calling out coordinate pairs and plotting the points on the grid while simultaneously trying to block their opponents from plotting four points in a horizontal or vertical line. The first player to plot four points in a row—such as (–2,4), (–2,5), (–2,6) and (–2,7)—wins! Tip: Have each player use a different-colored marker so that players can easily keep track of who has plotted which points throughout the game.


High/Low Fraction Game
Children build and compare fractions in this easy-to-play card game! Remove the face cards from a deck of cards so that only aces and numbers 2–10 remain. Use the aces to represent the number 1. (Set up four to five separate decks in this way, and place each deck into its own zip-close bag.) Place a deck of cards face down. Each player draws two cards from the deck and chooses one number to be the numerator and one to be the denominator. Players arrange their cards to create a fraction that has the highest or lowest value possible. Then, players compare their fractions to determine the winner of that round by using the downloadable Fraction Bars. (Print several sheets and laminate them to create dry-erase reference cards.) The game continues, and players alternate between creating the highest and lowest value possible.


Geometry Concentration
Students test their knowledge of geometry terms with this fun-to-play matching game! Simply download and cut apart the cards of the Geometry Concentration Game, or make your own. (Make four to five separate sets, and place each into its own zip-close bag.) Have players spread the cards out face down. Then, players take turns flipping over two cards at a time to try to find a matching pair—the geometry term and its corresponding definition. If players find a matching pair, they can keep it. If not, they flip the cards back over. Play continues until all matching cards are found. The player who collects the most pairs wins the game! Use the answer key from the bottom of the provided printable as a reference at the station.


Multiplication Mastery
Use a set of double-twelve dominoes (with the 11s and 12s removed) or download this set of Paper Dominoes. (Make several separate sets, and place each into its own zip-close bag.) Place all of the dominoes face down in a pile. A player flips over one domino to reveal the dots. The first player to multiply the two sides together and shout out the correct answer gets to keep the domino. At the end of the game, the person with the most dominoes wins! Variation: Instead of racing to be the fastest player, players simply take turns flipping over the dominoes and multiplying the two sides together. During a turn, if a player finds the correct answer, the player keeps the domino. If not, the domino is returned to the pile and play continues.


Money Riddles
For this station, set out a variety of money manipulatives to allow students to practice money calculations—hands on! Simply download these Money Riddle Cards…and students and parents work together to solve the riddles using play bills and coins. Use the answer key from the bottom of the provided printable as a reference at the station.


Internet Retailer Hot 100 Award Internet Retailer Mobile 100 Award Top 500 Internet Retailer Trustwave Norton Secured PayPal
©2017 Lakeshore Learning Materials. All rights reserved.