Monthly Archives: January 2021

Maths by Month – February (updated 2021)

Category : Uncategorized

Welcome to the February installment of Maths by Month.

As we proceed with the current reality of distance learning, rest assured that Edco Primary Maths and the Operation Maths blog will continue to support teachers, schools and families, including:

  • Dear Family, our ever-expanding series of posts, aimed at parents and families, supporting children’s mathematical development at home
  • Digging Deeper, our series of posts, aimed at teachers, providing deeper insights into the underlying theory, approaches and pedagogies behind the various maths topics
  • About Operation Maths posts, for teachers who want to find out more about the Operation Maths program itself.

HINT: To ensure you don’t miss out on any future blog-posts, please subscribe to the Operation Maths blog via email, on the top right hand of this page.
Another way to keep up to date an all new maths-related developments is to like/follow the Edco Primary Maths page on Facebook and/or Twitter 

Operation Maths for Junior Infants to Sixth Class:

To access lists of relevant links and online resources, navigate towards the end of the relevant Dear Family posts, for a whole suite of suggestions, organised into approximate class levels.

Don’t forget that integrated with your digital Operation Maths pupil books, are numerous custom-made digital resources to support each maths topic. Just click any of the hyperlinks while viewing the digital book to bring you direct to the relevant resource.

TIP! If there are any digital resources for a particular page, they will also be briefly given and described in the footer of that page (both print and digital books). 

HINT: If you are new to Operation Maths this year or have changed class level, be sure to check out the Quick Start Guide to the Operation Maths books and the companion Quick Start Guide to the Operation Maths Digital Resources. Don’t forget that Operation Maths also has you covered for planning whether you’re teaching a single class or multi-class. 

Other suggestions for February:

  • Lá ‘Le Bríde, is Monday, February 1st. The story of St. Brigid’s Cloak could be used as springboard into a pattern activity, or a discussion on exponential growth with older students.
  • Ireland’s first game in the 2021 Six Nations (against Wales in the Principality Stadium) is on Sunday 7th February. Some mathematical possibilities:
    • With older children, use the opportunity to explore the rugby union scoring system, and to identify what scores (up to 30, for example) are possible (how?) or impossible.
    • Calculate the number of games to be played; what if the competition had less or more teams, how many games would need to be played then?
    • Use the language of chance to discuss the possible outcomes for each nation in the competition and recognise that while it is impossible to predict the actual outcomes, we can use of knowledge of the teams performances to make informed predictions.
    • Calculate the dimensions of the pitch
    • Run a Fantasy Rugby League in your class
    • Make score predictions for each match and plot how these scores would be recorded on the Six Nations Table
  • Storytelling Week runs from 30 January to 6 February. While this is primarily a UK based event, it does serve as a timely reminder of the rich role that mathematical stories can play in the early years.  For teachers of infants to second class, be sure to check out the Literacy suggestions within the Integration section of each short term plan in the TRB.
  • Valentine’s Day is Sunday 14th February. Try out these themed problems  and challenges (suitable from first class up) from Mashup Math and, from the Routty Math Teacher, this selection of five Valentine’s Day-inspired starters, that are sure to engage your students and get them thinking critically about maths.
  • Pancake (Shrove) Tuesday is Tuesday 16th February. Recipes naturally provide great opportunities for real world maths, for example identifying the measures and amounts required, adding the correct measures to the mix, adapting the recipes to suit more or less people, etc. For more maths-related activities check out these pancake problems.

We’re here to help! If you have any questions on Operation Maths, Number Facts or anything related to primary maths over the course of the school year, please PM or contact Edco Primary Maths via Facebook and/or Twitter 


Dear Family, your Operation Maths guide to Symmetry

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Dear Family, below is a brief guide to understanding the topic of symmetry, as well as some practical suggestions as to how you might support your children’s understanding at home. Also below, are a series of links to digital resources that will help both the children, and you, learn more about symmetry. The digital resources are organised according to approximate class level:

Junior Infants to Second Class
You can also find class specific tips at the back of your child’s Operation Maths At Home book, for infants to second class, and in the Operation Maths Dear Family letters for third to sixth class.

Understanding Symmetry

Symmetry is introduced in second class and is a stand-alone maths topic in only second to fourth classes. That said, it also features as part of the topic of 2-D shapes in fifth and sixth classes where the children in those classes are asked to “classify 2-D shapes according to their lines of symmetry”.

While there are different types of symmetry (which children will explore deeper in second level maths), the primary curriculum specifies line symmetry, also known as mirror symmetry, reflective or reflection symmetry. 

In school, the children will often have the chance to use special child-safe mirrors to explore this concept, and to look at the mirror image of arrangements of various items. It would be really valuable for the children to be able to do something similar at home, with any suitable small mirrors that might be available (Tip: mirrors with straight outside edges rather than curved edges are better for this, eg a small mirror from the lid of a make-up pallet). Draw your child attention to the way in which the pattern appears to be reversed e.g. in the image above the order of the real cubes is orange, yellow, green, but in the reflection we see green, yellow, orange.

Practical Suggestions for Supporting Children

  • Symmetry at home: explore the symmetry that is all around you:
    • Look for examples of symmetry in clothes, furniture, windows, dishes, ornaments, doors, etc.
    • If going for a walk, look out for examples of symmetry in nature eg flowers, leaves.
    • Is there symmetry in any of the numbers we write? What about letters of the alphabet; lower-case and/or upper case (capital letters)? What about the letters in your name?
  • Take some time to use mirrors to explore symmetry (as mentioned above, small square, or rectangular, cosmetic mirrors are ideal for this). Using the mirrors the children can create and check symmetrical patterns using cubes, counters, objects etc. They can look for symmetry in numbers and capital letters (eg the letters on the cover of their Operation Maths book, other books, newspapers, boxes, food containers etc). Can your child answer the following questions?
    • What letters or numbers look the same in the mirror? What shapes or images look the same in the mirror?
    • Can you put the mirror along the middle of any letters and numbers so that they look complete? Does this work with any other shapes or images?
    • For some shapes/numbers/letters, is there more than one than one way, that the mirror can be placed?
  • Using the mirrors the children can create and check symmetrical patterns using pieces of lego, blocks or other suitable objects etc.
    • Place a mirror to the right or left of the arrangement. Describe what can be seen in the reflection.
    • Change the position of the mirror, perhaps above or below the arrangement. Does the reflection in the mirror look the same? Is it different? How? Why?
    • Repeat using different items and/or arrangements. Ask your child to predict what the mirror image will look like before they actually look into the mirror.
  • If your child has his/her Operation Maths twenty frame at home (free with Operation Maths 1 and 2) it can be used to create a symmetry challenge (see below). One person uses counters, lego pieces, buttons etc, to make an arrangement and the other person makes its mirror image. You could also do something similar with a chessboard/draughtboard and the playing pieces.

Digital Resources for Second Classes

In second class, the children are being introduced to simple symmetry. If your child knows very little about symmetry already, a good starting point is to watch some of the videos below.


Intro to Symmetry: All About Symmetry for Kids - FreeSchool - YouTubeIntro to Symmetry: A YouTube video that introduces  and explores reflectional (mirror) symmetry.  

 


Symmetry Song for Kids | A Day at Symmetry Land | Lines of Symmetry -  YouTubeSymmetry Land: Learn about lines of symmetry through this song from Numberock

 


Symmetry Painter . Games . peg + cat | PBS KIDSSymmetry Painter: This simple activity allows you to paint on one side and watch as the symmetrical image magically appears on the other side!

 


Image result for top marks symmetry

Symmetry Matching: 3 different games where you choose the matching symmetrical half.

 


Symmetry Sorting: 3 different games where you decide if the image shown is symmetrical or not symmetrical.

 


Math Game: QuadrilateralsI know it – Symmetry: Interactive quiz for Grade 1. After, you could try the Grade 2 quiz

 


Manipulatives | CoolMath4KidsPattern Blocks: Use these interactive pattern blocks to make numerous designs, pictures etc on one side of the screen. And then challenge yourself, or another, to complete the symmetrical image on the other side. 

 


IXL | Maths and English PracticeSymmetry: A selection of simple games from ixl.com. You can do a number of free quizzes each day without having a subscription. 

 


Math Games: a simple symmetry game ideal for beginners.

Digital Resources for Third and Fourth Classes

NB: Children in these classes may also enjoy the links for second class above


Line Symmetry and Reflection Symmetry Explained! - YouTubeVertical and Horizontal Lines of Symmetry: learn about different types of lines of symmetry from Mashup Math

 


Symmetry Shapes – TeacherLEDSymmetry Shapes: You will be shown a shape and you must create the reflection or mirror image of the shape as reflected in the line of symmetry. Click on the grid squares to colour them in, and then click check to see if you are correct. 


Symmetry Counters – TeacherLED

Symmetry Counters: Similar to the game above, an arrangement of counters will be shown and you move the other counters to create the reflection or mirror image of the arrangement, as reflected in the line of symmetry. 


Symmetry Invaders – TeacherLEDSymmetry Invaders: Can you complete the symmetrical images to win this space invaders-type game?

 


Math Game: QuadrilateralsI know it – Symmetry: Interactive quiz for Grade 3. After, you could try the Grade 4 or Grade 5 quiz

 


IXL | Maths and English Practice

IXL: A selection of symmetry games from ixl.com. You can do a number of free quizzes each day without having a subscription.

 


Math is FunMaths is Fun: Background information on reflection (mirror) symmetry

 


Line Symmetry Quiz: Identify the number of lines of symmetry in each shape by dragging the answers into the correct places.


Math Games: a whole suit of symmetry games, for a range of class levels; start with second class and work your way up.


Maths by Month – January (updated 2021)

Category : Uncategorized

Wishing you all a healthy and happy New Year and here’s hoping that there are better times ahead for us all.

But, for the meantime, we are all back in the reality of providing distance learning for our classes. As we journey forward together, rest assured that Edco Primary Maths and the Operation Maths blog will continue to support teachers, schools and families, including:

  • Dear Family, our ever-expanding series of posts, aimed at parents and families, supporting children’s mathematical development at home
  • Digging Deeper, our series of posts, aimed at teachers, providing deeper insights into the underlying theory, approaches and pedagogies behind the various maths topics
  • About Operation Maths posts, for teachers who want to find out more about the Operation Maths program itself.

HINT: To ensure you don’t miss out on any future blog-posts, please subscribe to the Operation Maths blog via email, on the top right hand of this page.
Another way to keep up to date an all new maths-related developments is to like/follow the Edco Primary Maths page on Facebook and/or Twitter 

Operation Maths for Junior Infants to Sixth Class:

HINT: Teachers of Infants to Second Class – if not yet done, don’t forget to use the Operation Maths Assessment Records on excel for recording and collating the End of December Assessments

To access lists of relevant links and online resources, navigate towards the end of the relevant Dear Family posts, for a whole suite of suggestions, organised into approximate class levels.

Don’t forget that integrated with your digital Operation Maths pupil books, are numerous custom-made digital resources to support each maths topic. Just click any of the hyperlinks while viewing the digital book to bring you direct to the relevant resource.

TIP! If there are any digital resources for a particular page, they will also be briefly given and described in the footer of that page (both print and digital books). 

HINT: If you are new to Operation Maths this year or have changed class level, be sure to check out the Quick Start Guide to the Operation Maths books and the companion Quick Start Guide to the Operation Maths Digital Resources. Don’t forget that Operation Maths also has you covered for planning whether you’re teaching a single class or multi-class. 

Other suggestions for January:

  • Backward Day! The 31st of January marks this little-known celebration which encourages us to reverse or invert the typical societal rules. Without encouraging anarchy, there are obvious opportunities here to explore symmetry, mirror writing etc.
    • Challenge your class to write out the capital letters of the alphabet backwards; not only starting with z but writing each letter as flipped image of itself.
    • Ask them to consider in advance which letters might appear the same when flipped backwards and what letters will appear different.
    • The children’s letters can be checked using small plastic mirrors to see if the image in the mirror is correct.
    • The children can also be asked to do the same thing with the digits 0-9 or even bigger numbers.
  • Most parts have had some snow already, and there could be more! The Routty Math Teacher has a whole library of Solve it Friday puzzles many of which align themselves with feasts and seasons. Sign up here to get access to the library and then check out weeks 16-19 for snow-themed puzzles.

We’re here to help! If you have any questions on Operation Maths, Number Facts or anything related to primary maths over the course of the school year, please PM or contact Edco Primary Maths via Facebook and/or Twitter