Thursday, July 23, 2009

Guessing Jar

A fun math activity you can do on a monthly basis is a Guessing Jar! Depending on your grade, you can make it easier or more challenging. Each month, fill a jar with an item and have the students guess how many items are in the jar. This teaches them: Estimation, prediction, counting and skip counting. At the end of the month, count the items in the jar as a class. I usually start by giving each student 5 or 10 of each item. Pass out the items until they are all gone, then count them as a class. If every student has 10, count by 10's and so on. The student closest to the correct number can win a certificate and any left over items in the jar (if you use candy). I usually place candy in the jars and then the students can eat the candy after we are done counting. Here are some ideas for candy:
  • January - Marshmallows (snow balls)
  • February - Candy Hearts
  • March - Gold Coins
  • April - Jelly Beans
  • May - Gumdrops
  • June/July - Summer Break!!!!
  • August - Cereal
  • September - Gumballs
  • October - Halloween Candy
  • November - Candy Corn
  • December - Mini Candy Canes
You can also use any seasonal M & M's for a certain month

Ideas for non-edible items:
  • Beads
  • Buttons
  • Pasta (colored or plain)
  • Shells
  • Smooth Pebbles (Arts and Crafts stores have these)
  • Pom Poms
  • Math Counters (teddy bears, etc)
  • Dried Beans
  • Marbles

  • Here is a picture of my Guessing Jar at Open House!!!

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