Last week I shared some favorite literacy resources. This week, let’s turn to math and science activities. I’ve got some great ideas for these subjects that you can use for individual work, small groups, or even the whole class.
3 quick science activities
Explain to your students that science is about understanding the physical and natural world better, and one of the ways we do that is by asking questions. Brainstorm a list of science questions. Think about ‘Why’ and ‘What would happen if’ questions. See if there are any you can test.
- Ring of Life. This is an outdoor activity. Ideally, you’ll have a small outdoor area that is not paved. Place a hoop on the ground (you can also use a jump rope or other item) to mark off a small area. Have students make lists of living things they see. Encourage them to describe the different things or sketch them. For follow up, you could revisit the same space later in the week to see if anything has changed. This activity helps students practice observation and recording details as well as learning about what is living near your school.
- Sink or Float. Fill a tub with water and provide students with a set of objects that can go in the water. Have students predict whether each object will sink or float, and say why they think so. Then have students test each object and record their results. Ask them to hypothesize about what makes things sink or float. Students practice making predictions, testing them, and drawing conclusions.
- Oobleck. Mix cornstarch and water together and you get oobleck, which has properties of both liquids and solids. It takes just a few minutes to measure (about 1 cup water to about 1.5–2 cups cornstarch) and mix. Let kids play with it. Ask them how it feels. What happens when they slowly put a finger into it? What happens when they poke it quickly and hard? Does it pour? Does it keep its shape? This is another chance for students to observe, record, ask questions and test their ideas.
3 fabulous math resources
Science shouldn’t get all the fun! So as we turn to math, we’ve got some games to keep things fun, along with activity sheets and task cards to help you cover a variety of math topics from time to shapes and beyond. Here are 3 math resources, you’ll want at the ready.
2D shape games and poster pack
Get kids familiar with 12 different 2D shapes by hanging posters around your room. These posters don’t just show the shape and name, they give descriptions in fun, informal language and tell kids where the shape is likely to be found.
Then with the whole class or a small math group, see how familiar kids are with the shapes by playing 2D shape bingo. Use simple or advanced clues to help students identify the shape and search it out on their cards.
Time-telling task cards
Can your students tell time? Time skills go beyond simply reading a clock, and this set of 60 tasks cards will help kids practice:
- Telling the time on an analog clock
- Showing the time on an analog clock
- Writing the time in different ways
- Using analog and digital time interchangeably
- Working out elapsed time
- Showing elapsed time
- Ordering time
Print the time telling task cards, laminate, and get kids going with a wipe-off marker. (But before you order, you might want to hear more about the Top Notch Teaching Members Club, because you could get this and a lot more.)
Fun math games and math activities
Let’s face it, there is a lot to cover when it comes to math. The two math resources I mentioned above cover shape and time, but within those categories, there’s more to teach. And then there’s numbers, mental math, space (beyond 2D shapes), measurement (beyond time), chance and data.
I’ve pulled together more than 138 pages of math games and activities to help students learn about and practice:
- place value
- the order of numbers
- multiplication facts
- counting on strategy
- near doubles strategy
- compatible numbers strategy
- partitioning strategy
- estimating strategy
- transformation of shapes
- making predictions
- chance events
- Venn diagrams.
In Fun Math Games and Math Activities, you get worksheets for independent work or home practice. You’ll find games (including shape dominos, calculator races, and dice games) and puzzles (like 100 chart puzzles) and a variety of activities (like tangrams and compass rose creation).
Here’s what teachers are saying:
“Awesome resource, covers a huge amount of our maths curriculum. Thank you!”
“Terrific resource.. all those great teaching points and understandings with activities and games to match. Thanks.”
You could have all these resources at your fingertips too!
Math and science activities and yet still more
I’ve shared some math and science activities today, but I’ve got so much more to make your teaching life easier. When the Top Notch Teaching Members Club opens in March, it will include the math resources I’ve mentioned here and so much more. You’ll find my favorite literacy tools, PE resources, classroom organization and time management tools. And you’ll find new resources not available in any other store!
Along with done for you, ready to print resources, you’ll find videos with ideas and tips for using products and videos about teacher self-care, reducing stress, and other topics to help you and your students thrive.
Doors open in March, but you can get on the waitlist for the Top Notch Teaching Members Club now: https://topnotchteaching.com/members/