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Math Starters!: Five- to Ten-Minute Activities That Make Students Think, Grades 6-12 Paperback – 14 Oct 1998

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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey Bass (14 Oct. 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0876285663
  • ISBN-13: 978-0876285664
  • Product Dimensions: 21.1 x 2.3 x 27.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 660,025 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

From the Back Cover

Here is a super collection of over 650 ready–to–use math starters that get kids quickly focused and working on math as soon as they enter your classroom! Perfect for any math curriculum, these high–interest problems spark involvement in the day′s lesson, help students build skills, and allow you to handle daily management tasks without wasting valuable instructional time. For easy use all of the math–starter problems are printed in a big 8 ¼" x 11" lay–flat format for photocopying and organized in two parts: Part I, "Making Math Starters a Part of Your Program" gives you practical suggestions for implementing math starters in your teaching routine, including tips on evaluation, class management, setting up cooperative groups, and more. Part II, "MATH Starters" provides six collections of math–starter problems related to six major areas of secondary math. Following is a brief overview of what you′ll find for each math areas: WHOLE NUMBERS: THEORY & OPERATIONS 86 problems like "Perfect Squares," "Emirps," "Divisibility by 11," and "Symbols" covering types of numbers, basic operations, rules for divisibility, multiple, greatest common factors and other topics FRACTIONS, DECIMALS & PERCENTS 122 starters such as "Comparing Fractions & Decimals," "Equivalencies" and "Finding a Number When the Percent of It Is Unknown" MEASUREMENT 7% problems using English and metric measurements, time temperature and other measures, including "Obsolete Units" (cubics & spans), "The 24–Hour Clock," "Cords of Wood," "Parsecs and Light Years," and "Computer Memory" GEOMETRY 130 starters such as "Types of Angles," "Convex Polygrams," "Generating Pythagorean Triples," and "Identifying Trapezoids and Parallelograms" ALGEBRA 128 problems, prealgebra and up, such as "The Number Line," "Adding and Subtracting Integers," "Finding the Slope," and "Finding the GCF of Monomials" POTPOURRI 112 math starters on data analysis, probability, fractals, codes, vectors and more, such as "Number Ciphers," "Finding Simple Probability" and "Magic Squares" Complete answer keys for all math starters are provided in the "Answer Keys" at the end. Moreover to help you easily select problems to meet the diverse needs of your students, the difficulty level of each starter is denoted by one, two, or three stars for individual or group work. And as a further help, the skills in each of the books′s six sections of math starters follow a sequence common to most math curriculum.

About the Author

Gary Robert Muschla has over 23 years′ experience as a classroom teacher. He is a member of the Authors Guild and the National Writers Association and currently teaches at Appleby School in Sportswood, NJ. Judith A. Muschla has been a mathematics teacher in South River, NJ, for the past 23 years. She was the recipient of the 1990–91 Governor′s Teacher Recognition Program Award in New Jersey. The Muschlas previously co–authored The Math Teacher′s Book of Lists (Prentice Hall, 1995), and Hands–on Math Projects with Real–Life Applications (The Center for Applied Research in Education, 1996).

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By K. Ennis on 1 Aug. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book contains about 650 starter activities covering the areas of integers, fractions / decimals / percentages, measurements, geometry, algebra, and a miscellaneous section which includes data handling and series. It is comprehensive and very well designed and produced. But from a teaching viewpoint it has the following flaws:

1) The problems are designed to cover a very wide age range (years 6 to 12) with differing levels of difficulty in each year, making it quite a chore to hunt down the tasks relevant to a particular ability level.
2) Too many of the tasks are run of the mill "apply these techniques" questions, such as converting improper fractions to mixed numbers or substituting values into algebraic expressions. These require students to practise rather than to think.
3) Too many of the questions are US-specific (baseball averages, quarts and American gallons) to be useful for an English audience.
4) Many of the questions are too involved to be easily reproduced on powerpoint or interactive whiteboards, so they have to be photocopied and cut & pasted into worksheets.

On the positive side, the authors are quite good at building real life reference points into the questions (if you solve this calculation, the answer will be the year when this interesting event happened) and some of the questions which require students to explain something rather than just answer it are valuable and could be used in a cross-curricular way.
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By Dragana on 15 Feb. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very good.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 9 reviews
23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
A great investment for any math teacher! 6 May 2003
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
I use activities from this book almost every day. It can be used to reinforce current concepts or to review prior lessons. It covers a wide variety of topics and offers problems that are appropriate for a broad range of abilities (I teach 8th-grade math). It is a great way to engage students from the minute they walk in the door. The problems are great for challenging ALL of your students!
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Basic Skills, not so basic activities 2 Jun. 2007
By D. Caine - Published on
Format: Paperback
I really love most of the worksheet pages in this book. This is a book full of reproducible pages. The pages are great reinforcement pages to a middle/high school curriculum, but the worksheets are not dull and boring. They use higher level thinking skills and offer a little bit of interest by including secret messages and game-type worksheets, too. Highly recommend. Great homework pages. Easy to match up the skills with your curriculum since each page focuses on a single topic.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Great Curriculum Supplement 26 Sept. 2005
By SeaLass - Published on
Format: Paperback
II find these math starters very helpful. I have been using them since the beginning of school and they have been a wonderful tool to help my students get back into the routine of school work.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Spicing Up the Topic 8 July 2005
By Paul Kelley - Published on
Format: Paperback
Works as a supplement to make students think in different ways. A must for students accustomed to rote problems such as those contained in the Saxon Series.
Wonderful Resource 16 Mar. 2013
By Betty A. Wright - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a special education teacher in a junior high and I use this book for ideas for my "Challenge Board". Every day I put up a math challenge, some easy, some much harder, and any who can solve one gets a treat. I have been thrilled to see how hard some students will work to beat the challenge. Each chapter starts out with easier problems and slowly works up to more difficult ones. I pick and choose from each chapter to find material that I feel is appropriate. Just as the title says, these are math starters, not lessons, and geared for the higher grades. I would love to see an electronic version that was compatible with the smart boards our school uses.
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