Monday, January 27, 2014


Hello to all you wonderful teachers and bloggers! Just like Shelley, things have been crazy for me as well, so I apologize for being MIA for a while.

Since I last posted (terrible to say but I cannot even remember when...all I know is it was at the beginning of the school year), a lot has happened. I graduated with my Masters in Educational Technology in December from the University of Missouri (MIZ-ZOU). That was the best feeling in the world. It still feels surreal that it's all over with, as it felt like I just started. Call me crazy...but I have been thinking about starting up my doctorate degree. I haven't applied or anything but have been seriously thinking about it.

Callie sitting with Grandpa a few weeks ago

Along with my masters, I helped welcome my new niece, Calliope "Callie" Ann, into this world in September. I have been obsessed ever since I met her. I will was an interesting experience as Philip and I don't have any children yet, but it was all so worth it. Here are some pictures of my adorable niece.

Callie a few weeks after she was born
Ok...enough with the updates with me. Now onto talking about money! Who doesn't love money!?

We just started teaching money in 3rd grade at my school. We are a little behind with our schedule due to various snow days (we are up to 7 now), but that's what I have learned with rarely follow a schedule exactly. Anyways, I wanted to share a few ideas that I am using in my classroom.

On the first day I introduced money, I split up my kiddos into 6 groups. I gave each group a cup of coins and a piece of paper. I sent the groups off by telling them that they had 5 minutes to write down as many words to describe the money as possible. I told them I wanted them to think that I didn't know anything about the money. Then we came back to the floor and discussed what they came up with. I created an anchor chart with some of their answers. Their answers varied from what the coins looked like, to its use, to the value of the coins. I thought this was a great hands on activity where all learning abilities were engaged.

For the remaining part of the money unit, I am going to focus on adding money and making change. Since I have two math groups I meet with daily, I will teach making change to $5 for my lower kiddos, and for my higher kiddos, $20 and higher.

I plan to use the Math Academy-Dining Out resources. I printed out some of the menus and corresponding questions. Every student will get a menu. However, my higher kiddos will be the only ones to receive the questions. You can also get some local restaurant menus or store ads to use with your kiddos.

While I am meeting with my lower group (I meet with them first), my higher group will be working on answering the questions with corresponding menus. If they finish, they get to work on a challenge packet that comes from the Singapore Math Program and/or play my Money War game. I use the challenge packet as homework too.

With my lower group, I plan on asking them questions from the menus and having them add the items up and make change.

For example, I bought a hot dog and a soda. How much did I spend? Then, I used $5 to pay for it. How much change will I get back? I will have them create the change using two different combinations. They will work with a partner or individually to answer these questions. I will work with my struggling students as needed.

After meeting with my lower kiddos, they will work on the corresponding workbook pages, which comes from the Singapore Math Program. This will happen for several days.

Another idea I may use is having my students create a menu. When they have completed the menu, they will get with a partner and practice buying items from the menu and making change. This may be something they do when they have free time.

The following are also websites I am going to try to use with my kiddos as well:

Enough from me...what about you? How do you teach money and making change?

The first 2 people to reply will receive my Money War game for free. Please make sure to include an email address with your response.

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  1. Love hearing how you structure your math time! I have very high and very low kiddos in math and it can be a struggle to give all students what they need to succeed! Thanks for the great resources. We will tackle money in a couple of months!

    1. Thank you so much for your comment. I am so glad I could offer some ideas! :) I find it difficult at times as well to teach various levels. However, grouping has been the easiest and best way for me.

      Thanks again for your comment! Your game will be in your inbox soon! :)

  2. Thanks so much for all the math resources and links you've provided! So helpful for teachers to hear how others are using or plan to use the resources in differentiated ways. Looking forward to checking out more about your money resources on TPT. Again, my thanks. Stephanie

    1. Thank you so much for your comment. I am so glad I could help out! :) I love implementing technology whenever possible as I feel like students can learn so much with it.

      Thanks again! Your game will be in your inbox soon! :) enjoy!

    2. Wow! How wonderful. Many thanks!

  3. We don't teach math in third- but we cover it in intervention groups since they really don't get it!

  4. I agree with you about students not getting it. It's a great strategy to cover within intervention time. Thanks so much for your comment!

  5. This is a great idea. I love the idea of teaching it in groups. I've been so unhappy that money is no longer in the 3rd grade curriculum since many of my students don't really "get it" and it's such an important life skill. Thanks so much.


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