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### Why I'm Not Teaching Decimal Operations "Rules"

This post has been moved to: http://www.cognitivecardiowithmsmm.com/blog/why-im-not-teaching-decimal-operations-rules

### Comments

1. Good idea, Ellie.the, "I tried my best..." explanation always kills me. (Sorry, not trying to advertise but I don't know how to give this to you any other way.) If you'd like, stop over at my store (Pamela Kranz) and grab my free Become a Math Lawyer, Defend Your Answer poster/label set. It broke my 6th graders of the I-don't-know-but-it-looks-right routine. :) Good luck!

2. Thanks, Pam, I'll check it out!

3. My students always mix up the rules with decimals/fractions/integers operations. It is important to teach them the reasons why instead of just the rules. Like you said, they need number sense. When you add decimals, you are adding place values. When you multiply 2.7 x 2.4, you are making 2.7 groups of 2.4 and estimating helps determine your answer.

Interesting way to put this! I've got a year to rethink my decimal operations unit.

### Memory Wheels - First Day, Last Day, and Any Day in Between!

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### Love to Doodle (and a freedbie)

Exponents Color by Number For most of my school life as a student (and even as an adult, during PD), I have really liked doodling! During lectures, discussions...it would help me focus, but also give me something to make me look busy, so I wouldn't get called on in class! I always hated being called on and almost never participated voluntarily:) I liked to draw cubes, rectangles, squiggly lines, etc, and color in different parts of the doodles. Download this freebie:-) I really wanted to make some color by number activities. Since I am not good at creating actual pictures, I decided to make my color by numbers similar to my random drawing/doodling. My Exponent Color by Number is most similar to my past doodles, but I thought it was a little too random, so I started using actual shapes. The Integer Operations Color by Number (freebie), as well as most of my other color by numbers are more structured, but so much fun for me to make! Computerized doodling! Anyone else

### Math Class - First Day Activity

Rectangle of pentominoes Many 6th graders seem to have a pretty negative attitude about math, so I try to do something interesting to "grab" them during our first class. Last year, during the first math class, we spent part of the period working with pentominoes. Before working with the pentominoes, however, we played a name game so we could learn each others' names (I find it impossible to start anything else if I don't know some names, and fortunately, I learn them fairly quickly). rectangle outline For the activity, I divided the students into groups of 3 or 4. The directions for the activity were not complicated - the task was to make a rectangle, using all of the pentominoes. I gave students an outline of the rectangle, as pictured to the left, so they would know the correct size of the rectangle. The squares in the grid are each one inch. The rectangle is 5 squares (inches) wide and 13 inches long (13 inches includes the row that has the "Pent