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Weekly Math Challenge

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Subjects

  • Mathematics
    --Process Skills

Grade

  • 3-5
  • 6-8
  • 9-12
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Brief Description

Students visit the classroom Weekly Math Challenge center to earn rewards for solving math challenges.

Objectives

Students will

  • apply their math knowledge to solve puzzles that require math skill and/or logic.

Keywords

puzzle, challenge, math, center, logic

Materials Needed[shopmaterials]

  • N/A

Lesson Plan

Math Challenge Sources

Many teachers have puzzle books that are excellent sources of Weekly Math Challenges. In addition, the following online resources offer dozens of excellent challenges:
Turn a corner of your classroom or part of a bulletin board over to a Weekly Math Challenge. Each week, post a new challenge or puzzle in that space. Give students a week to solve the challenge.

Before introducing this activity, have each student create a Math Challenge notebook or a booklet by stapling together pages of writing paper. When students solve the Weekly Math Challenge puzzle, they write the solution and a description of the math or thought process that helped them solve the problem in their notebooks. Students hand in the notebook when they are satisfied with their solution.

Keep a record of students who solve the weekly challenges. Following are a few ways in which correct responses might be rewarded:

  • Keep a class chart on the Weekly Math Challenge wall. Add a star next to a person's name each time that person provides a correct solution.
  • Award 5 bonus points toward the next quiz score.
  • Award a certificate for one homework-free night.
  • Invite students who correctly solve five or more puzzles to take part in a special pizza luncheon at the end of the semester.
  • Award a special prize to the student who correctly solves the most challenges in a semester. (Examples: A gift certificate for a record store, a video game, a coveted T-shirt.)

Notes:

  • If it appears that a particular Math Challenge is giving students a hard time, offer an additional clue to help out.
  • You may elect not to return notebooks to students until the next Weekly Challenge is posted. That will cut down the possibility that students will share correct answers with their peers.

Assessment

Students turn in their Weekly Math Challenge notebooks if they have a solution to offer. Correct responses make students eligible for established rewards.

Lesson Plan Source

Education World

Submitted By

Gary Hopkins

National Standards

The Weekly Math Challenge exercises and reinforces a variety of math skills. The specific skills and standards that might be measured depend on the challenges that teachers provide.

See more math lessons at the Math Archive.

Click to return to the Math Fun lesson plan page.

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