Engaging Math Activities to Improve Math Mindset
If I had a nickel for every person that told me they weren’t a math person, I could retire! Unfortunately, when parents (and even teachers) say they aren’t good at math, that attitude mirrors with students. Instilling a growth math mindset in students can start early! Your students will be excited to try these engaging math activities to improve math mindset in the classroom. They’re so much fun that they won’t even realize they are reviewing and learning new math skills!
Math Mystery Picture Reveal
Even though math can be a challenge to so many learners, it doesn’t have to be! Instead, make math a little mysterious and fun with these Math Mystery Picture Reveals!
Each Mystery Picture Reveal Activity contains 16 math problems for your learners to review specific math skills.
Because the activity is designed in Google Sheets™, you can upload and integrate directly into Google Classroom™.
Here’s how it work! First, students solve a math problem and enter their answer on the Google Sheet. A correct answer reveals piece of the picture on the sheet. After answering all problems correctly, a kid-friendly joke. The mystery not only brings affirmation of math skills but giggles as well!
I love using this Common Core- aligned activity with math centers and distance learning. Since it’s self-grading, it’s perfect for independent learning or groups! Practice addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division with Math Mystery Picture Reveals!
Math Scavenger Hunt
Give this assignment for homework or on Zoom or Teams during distance learning! Have students find items in their home that solve a math problem or skill.
Here are a few math scavenger hunt items to add to your game list!
- Find an equilateral triangle
- Locate a sphere.
- Find ___ writing utensils. (The number is the solution to an equation of your choice.)
- Measure an item in your home to the nearest inch (foot or centimeter).
Brainstorm your own math scavenger hunt items to use online or in-person with your students. Incentivize the scavenger hunt by keeping score. Also, differentiate for students by allowing students to draw the items if they don’t have them accessible at home. Otherwise, try to include items that most students would have available or give ideas ahead of time. Math scavenger hunts get students ready to learn and excited about math!
Bonus: Have your students create their own math scavenger hunt items to add to your list.
One of the best ways to improve math mindset is to make math a game! Prodigy uses game-based learning to engage elementary students and level up their math skills! Students play a “quest” game and have battles while solving problems and reviewing math skills. They can even play against (or with) classmates.
Because Prodigy aligns with curriculum standards for K-8 learners, you can be assured that your students are getting what they need with Prodigy in developing their math mindset.
The latest version of Prodigy has new pets, games, and more. Use Prodigy as a math center, enrichment, or even during distance learning!
Bonus: Create an after hours Prodigy math club! Have your students logon and play for extra review to improve math mindset.
Math Escape Rooms
Whenever I say the words “escape room”, students eyes light up! Math escape rooms are all about code-breaking and solving puzzles. These skills perfect for those students wanting to improve math mindset! Each math escape room includes:
- 20 Math Problems
- 5 Stations and Decoders
- How to Decode Reference Sheet
- Answer Key
- Teacher Directions and Set Up
- Differentiated Time Options
- Student Recording Sheet
If you’re familiar with traditional escape rooms, you may expect a lot of prep work or locks to program. Not with these awesome math escape rooms! Just print and go so you spend your time focusing on improving math mindset and teaching or reviewing math skills.
The Math Escape rooms cover dozens of different math skills. Try a few with your students in elementary or middle school math classrooms!
- Adding and Subtracting Negative Numbers
- Balancing Equations
- Distributive Property
- Multistep Word Problems
- Real World Variables
. . .and more!
There are so many ways to use math escape rooms to improve math mindset in the classroom. Try these puzzles with pre-assessments, group stations, unit review, state testing review, enrichment activities, cooperative learning, formative assessments, rewards, and brain breaks!
Math escape rooms are engaging math activities to improve math mindset with any learner in your classroom!
Bonus: Make the math escape rooms a race to the finish. Which team finishes first? Share a prize like candy, a homework pass, or more!
Growth Math Mindset for the Win
These engaging activities to improve math mindset will help you rid the “I’m not good at math” blues. Make sure to use “You can” and “You will” statements when students start to struggle with math or give up. These activities are just one step in improving math mindset. You as their teacher are the best resource in growth math mindset wins!