SUM Fun!

The Westwood-Bales families hit the jackpot with SUM togetherness and fun when faculty and staff hosted our fourth annual Math Night and Health Fair! Community organizations sponsored the fifteen booths at the Health Fair and gave away coupons, pencils and toothbrushes to advertise their service and celebrate their partnership with us. Families enjoyed a healthy alternative to the Cake Walk - the Fruit Loop - and moved to music to encourage preventative maintenance for our health and wellness.

Such a great graphic created by our AmAzInG webmaster Jane Ann!

Inspired by resources from Box Cars and One-Eyed Jacks, our math stations included things like measurement activities and movement challenges, mancala and memory games, shuffling numbers and two-digit scramble, the guesstimate game and geometric shape-ups. The Credit Union even joined us to chat with our students about fiscal responsibility and money matters. 

We gave Golden Rulers to last year's Math Night participants.

Families at the rotation I hosted stopped by to listen to readings of the 
Kathryn Otoshi books entitled Zero and One. 

Here's One of the books I shared.

During the stories, I stopped a few times to asked how the numbers felt. When I inquired what that's called when you care about and can understand how someone else is feeling, each time a student was able to answer empathy - yay!

After reading the stories aloud, I posed the question: 
How do you know that you count at our school?

A first-grade cutie shows that she counts at our school.

I showed this zero cut into a paper and we pondered about what it is that gives us value and makes us count. Note to self - with more time, students could write down or draw pictures of their thoughts so that we could post them in a prominent place.

Here's the bibliography I made available at my station of twelve books with a character theme that have a numbers-or-shapes-related connection, 
making them easy to integrate into a math lesson. 

Zoe the Misfit by Ellen Dee Davidson (triangles/fitting in)
One Thousand Tracings by Lita Judge (measuring/caring)
Mouse Was Mad by Linda Urban (sphere/feelings)
The Greedy Triangle by Marilyn Burns (triangles/belonging)
One Grain of Rice by Demi (the power of one/fairness)
One by Kathryn Otoshi (numbers/upstanding)
Zero by Kathryn Otoshi (place value/self-esteem)
Square Cat by Elizabeth Schoonmaker (squares/fitting in)
Being Wendy by Fran Drescher (cubes/accepting differences)
The Hundred Penny Box by  Sharon Bell Mathis (money/caring)
The Hundred Dresses by Eleanor Estes (numbers/fitting in)
Billy Bully: A school-yard counting tale by Alvaro and Ana Galan (counting/respect)

If you've got a favorite Math Strategy, link it up with Rainbows Within Reach by clicking on the link below:


  1. Wow, what a fun evening! Your station sounds amazing. Thanks for the book list. Some of those are new to me.

    Grade ONEderful

  2. Another great book is The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin by Joe Troiano. It is about a square pumpkin who feels bad about the fact that he looks different, but then comes the day that he saves the rest of the pumpkins. A great read!


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