Motivate Students With Your
Math Word Wall Activities!!
A math word wall is essential in any class!
Depending on what strand you're teaching, you can also use manipulatives or pictures - printed or hand drawn as well as the words.
As you teach the strand, eg. Geometry, and introduce the terminology of the unit, print the word(s) on a separate rectangular piece of colourful paper with the definition, eg. polygons, congruent, rhombus. In this particular situation, you can also draw the shape or tape the shape on the word wall.
You can also use some of the words on the math word wall for spelling list words or bonus spelling words.
Make sure that as you teach a particular unit, you try to use the terminology on the word wall throughout the lesson.
You can create other games or word wall activities using the words on the math word wall. Example - Bingo, using the overhead, every student has a bingo card. Pull out math words from a bag. When they complete a line - up, down or diagonally, start a new game or even fill out the whole card. Have the students pull out the math names as well.
Another activity or math game you can play is a type of guessing game. Play in groups of 3 or 4. Each student chooses a word from the word wall and has to give 3 clues (attributes). The students in the other groups have to guess what the word is.
Another guessing game is played with a partner. Each student prints a word from the word wall on an index card and tapes it on their partner's back. Student "A" walk around the room and other students give student "A" a clue as to what is written on his back. If student "A" guesses what's written on his back, he can remove the index card from his back. He can still give a clue to others who still have the index card on their back.
The students really enjoy this game/activity and it gets them thinking of the words on the word wall. Collect the cards after the game/activity is done.
The word wall is also a great visual reference as the unit is taught.
You may think that you don't have a lot of words to put up on the word wall, but there are no specific number of words that need to be put up - three or four - nine or ten. But keep in mind, if there are too many words, it can become too cluttered or overwhelming.
The wall may then not be pleasing to the eye and your students may not want to look at it for any reason.
Remember to refer to the word wall often while you are teaching the unit, so that the students don't forget that the words are there.
Whether you are teaching a big unit/strand like Data Management or a small unit/section such as Multiplication, you can always find words to create a creative and informative math word wall.
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