Monday, September 28, 2015

Magic Die: An Engaging Trick to Teach Missing Addends

Hello!  This is Mandy from Mandy's Tips for Teachers! Today is Monday, so it is a...

I know Erin has shared a fun math activity for kids before. Today, I want to share a super simple math trick that will engage all kids- even big fifth graders.  The best part?  Even a first grader can do it!

Meet Magic Die! This can be turned into an entire lesson to introduce missing addends or just a simple trick during bus call to entertain kids!

one die

Set Up:
Explain to the students that you have x-ray vision.  You can see straight through the die, to see what number is on the bottom facing the table- even though you can't see it.

1.) Roll the die.
2.) Make sure students are aware of the number rolled, without picking up the die.
3.) To figure the missing number, simply find the sum of 7.  Whatever is rolled on top +  number on the bottom= 7.  The way the die is set up will make it so that the problems will always equal a combination of 7.
4.) You can create an anchor chart and see if students can solve the magic trick or just show them!
5.) Allow students time to practice so they can wow their friends!

Skills Learned:

  • Missing addends
  • Combinations of 7

Tips and Tricks:

  • Teach students how to roll a die first so dice aren't flying all over the room. My kids knew to cup their hands close, gently shake, and then drop close to the tabletop or floor.
  • You  can use a scrap of felt or the Dollar Store placemats to muffle the noise of dice bouncing so the room is quieter.
  • For a few dollars, you can purchase a die for each child from the Dollar Tree.  I think dice are $1 and there are 6 in a package. Once children master the "trick," send them a die home to teach others (and practice even more!).
I hope this added a new, short math trick to your bag!

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