Tuesday, June 15, 2010

my favorite math site

I just wanted to give a shout out to my favorite math web site. It's something I stumbled on about 9 years ago when it was first getting going. I've been using it ever since. If you have school age people at home, this is one you're going to want to bookmark. It's called The Math Worksheet site. Now, before I loose you with the whole 'worksheets aren't fun blah blah thinking,' just wait until you see what they have to offer.

I love how it started. It was a homeschooling dad that was looking for a resource for use at home. He created this generator to help him make work sheets for his kids, then shared it with other homeschoolers online. He was surprised when it was classroom teachers who were most interested. He's turned it into a full time deal for himself and offers now hundreds of kinds of sheets. I was a member once when I taught- allowing me to use the 220 additional member only styles. Without a membership you are still able to access lots of styles of sheets. For free, you can print off telling time, multiplication, measurement, addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, graphing, fractions, mixed, and hundreds charts.

The best part is the customization. When I went to find addition sheets for this weeks school work, I got to choose from single digit or multiple digit, horizontal or vertical, carrying or no carrying. You can even choose which numbers you want in the sheet. I wanted low numbers since this is the first time Bee has seen a sheet like this. (Bee is using counters to solve her problems)

For my one level up math student, I allowed for some larger numbers, but still single digit.

For my oldest math student, I selected double digits with mixed carrying. All three of these were customizied and printed in under one minute! You can even select to print out an answer key.

When I taught in the public school, I did a lot of differentiation of work for my students. This was a life saver. I could mix and match and have 8 different levels of work going on at once with little extra work. I don't know what it costs now to be a member, but a number of years ago it was a real bargain.

A few quick thoughts on work sheets. I took one particular class in college that was uber anti-worksheet. I know the anti argument. I also see the necessity of them as well. While, I certainly don't do all instruction and assessments via worksheets, I see their importance in schooling. My biggest argument is that children are tested via paper and pencil assessments on state standardized tests so they need to practice on paper and pencil activities. Additionally, a hard copy of their work is an important element in accessing their performance. It's what parents want to see; it's concrete showing of performance. Anyway, I think they have their place in instruction and assessment and have found The Math Worksheet Site a valuable free resource.

2 comments:

grandma said...

I think you have a good point for worksheets. It seems Bee is very interested in classroom work.

Kelly Nieman Anderson said...

i dislike worksheets, personally, but professionally, I can't find a useful alternative. They're the best way to give repetitive practice. Esp. in math - I'll pass this website on to my elem. teaching friends.