Saturday, January 27, 2024

Great Than, Less Than, or Equal to Gators!

 Teaching the greater than, less than, and equal to symbols can seem a bit confusing for some learners at first! In this unit, students get introduced to the symbols with fun gators, then progress to using correct symbols and language.

Take a look inside this unit and find out how to grab your own copy below!

Teaching Through Hands-On Activities

If there is one thing we all know as educators, it's that hands-on playtime fun is important for little ones! Being able to interact with and manipulate things while learning is an important part of development for kids of any age.

Inside this unit, you'll find some very cute hungry gators and some tasty fish to feed them with. Your learners will take two fish discs (that come either numbered or not) and decide which gator should go between them - the greater gator, less gator, or equal to gator disc.

Playdough Mat Fun!

Playdough is another great manipulative that I know many of us love to use during math class. What better way to get kids using that hand-to-mind connection (with some bonus fine motor work!) while doing their math. 

This set comes with 3 playdough mats featuring different gators. Kids can build playdough fish to show an equal/not equal example.

Worksheets for Desk Time

This set comes with 7 different worksheets featuring different levels of skill for differentiation and progression. They include:

  • A cut & paste worksheet (paste the correct gators between the fish)
  • A dot or color worksheet to color the number the gator should eat (or not eat)
  • A tracing worksheet to practice tracing the symbols
  • 2 Different worksheets where students must draw the symbols (one with numbers to ten, one with numbers to 20)
  • Build a snack worksheet (students draw fish on either side of the gators - this goes great with the playdough mats!)

This unit also features 9 different posters that can be used at different times or together. They feature either the gators or the traditional symbols. This is a great way to show students the similarities between the symbols and the gators mouths. 

Grab this Unit!
You can find this unit in my teacher shops below! 

Friday, January 26, 2024

Learning Division Facts: A Free Workbook (Skip Counting Method)

 Learning Division Facts

 A Free Workbook (Skip Counting Method)

This free workbook will help your learners go from basic visual division using manipulatives to learning how to divide through skip counting. With fun illustrations, colorful pages, and loads of examples and practice!

Teaching kids to divide seems simple at first. If we have four things and want to share them equally, how do we share them? But when the numbers start getting bigger (144 divided by 12?) things get a little more complicated and using manipulatives just isn't as efficient.

In this workbook, kids will learn the basics of division using manipulatives, then progress to using skip counting as a means of dividing. 

Skip counting is just one of the methods that people use to divide. When you're trying to figure out how to divide your 100 garden seeds amongst 5 plots of land you might think "how many times does 5 go into 100?". This method of dividing is perfect for kids who are already familiar with skip counting or who have learned their skip counting from multiplication.

Using this workbook, students won't need to know all of their skip counting tables by heart either, just understand the concept of skip counting. Charts and help are provided inside the workbook to help them skip count.

As you can see in the image above, the workbook starts out simple with division using manipulatives. Kids cut out and divide cupcakes, dog bones, and pepperoni slices onto different things, learning through real-life examples. If your learner isn't familiar with division, you may want to spend a while on this concept first.

After learners know the basics of division, they move onto the skip counting method. Once again, real-life examples are used that kids can relate to, like baking an apple pie or sharing snacks with a soccer team.

Plenty of examples are given before students are expected to work on their own. Once they are ready to solve problems on their own, they can use the included skip counting chart or number lines to help them along. They'll be given an equation to solve and the option of writing their own problem to solve the equation.

Finally, plenty of practice worksheets are included that have handy skip-counting number lines at the top. Ordered facts as well as mixed facts sheets are included so that your learners can work with what works best for them. 

Each sheet also comes with two options - either writing a problem to go with an equation or modelling the equation. I recommend a mix of the two, or if you have students who do not like writing, you could always have them make up a problem out loud or in pairs.

Download the free workbook below

I hope that you and your learners enjoy this freebie! It helped my own kiddo learn division, so it's one that I really believe in.

You can download the workbook by clicking on the link below. All that I ask is that when sharing this workbook through print you keep my website name on the page and refer people to this blog post if they'd like to download it themselves. Schools are free to store it in a shared drive so long as my website name remains on the pages it is printed on.

Download Division By Skip Counting Workbook here

Monday, January 22, 2024

Writing a Reading Response Essay: A Free Workbook for 6th Graders

Writing a Reading Response Essay:
 A Free Workbook for 6th Graders

 Writing a reading response essay can be a really daunting task for middle schoolers. At this age, most kids are just beginning to grasp the hidden meanings behind stories and books, the implied things in a story that are so much more obvious to us as adults who have experienced so much more.

So when I discovered that my daughter would need to write a reading response essay in an exam this year, I got to work doing my best research on how best to approach such a big topic with such young students. 

And what did the research point to?

Be short and to the point!

I came up with the idea of making a workbook of sorts for kids - but there are no busywork pages in here - the only thing they'll be writing are notes and their essays. They can just go at their own pace.

This could also be done as a class, a homework assignment over a few days, or a homeschool resource (as we will use it!)

The language in here is simple and easy for kids to follow - it encourages them to look at the themes, tone and mood of a story plus make connections and give their opinions on that story. If your learners don't know what any of this means - don't worry!

Every page and topic is filled with explanations and even sentence stems to use in their essays!

The workbook first uses the classic short story by Hans Christian Andersen called 'The Fir Tree'. It's a story that I find perfect for this unit as it's quite short - students can even have the webpage provided read it for them - and it has great theme, literary devices, and a definite tone to it.

Students will begin by reading a short page about what a reading response essay is and what will be expected of them in the essay. In this particular unit, I've included these topics:

  • Thesis statement / topic sentence
  • Theme
  • Connections
  • Mood, Tone, literary Devices
  • Opinions and Conclusion
Next, they'll listen to or read the story while taking notes about each topic (on a special notetaking page in the workbook)

Finally, they'll get to work writing their essays and putting everything they learn on each new page together. 

Although this unit starts with the included short story, it can be used with any story. I've even included links to other great free short story websites. It could, however, be used with a longer novel as well.

I also made a handy checklist that kids can use as a reference while writing future reading response essays.

You can download this free unit by clicking on the link below.
All I ask is that when sharing this unit you leave my website name on each page, and if you're showing it to someone online, to refer them to this blog (
Thank you! Enjoy Learning!