DynaMath for grades 3–6 provides nonfiction and fiction-based exercises that help teach math, math articles that connect learning to the real world, and interactive activities to get kids excited about numbers!
African children holding goats Goats provide the people of this African village with milk that can be made into butter, cheese, and yogurt. (Courtesy Save the Children)

Gifts That Give Back

Kids raise money to donate livestock for families in need

One of the best parts about the holidays is giving gifts—especially to people in need. For people in rural communities around the world, the perfect gift might be a sheep, a goat, or a flock of chicks. These can provide their owners with food to eat or products to sell.

Through organizations like Save the Children and Heifer International, students are contributing money toward these gifts. For example, through Heifer International, your class can buy a family a flock of female chicks for $20. Once the chicks grow into adult chickens, they’ll lay eggs. Families can use some of the eggs for food and sell the rest to earn money.

“It’s really about empowering communities to take care of themselves,” says Allison Stephens of Heifer International.

Find out more about the gifts these donations provide by modeling division problems.


You can use place-value blocks or draw pictures to represent division problems.
Example: To buy ducks for a family, 4 classes make equal donations that total $60. How much does each class give?

Represent 60 using place-value blocks. Use 6 tens blocks. Because there are 4 classes, divide the 6 tens into 4 equal groups. (You will have blocks left over.)

Each group has one ten, with 2 tens left over.
Trade the 2 tens blocks left over for 20 ones.

Divide the ones into 4 equal groups. Each group gets 5. Add these to your equal groups of tens.

Answer: Each group has 15 blocks: Each class gives $15.
Use place-value blocks or draw models to answer these questions.   

This article originally appeared in the November/December 2012 issue of Dynamath. For more from Dynamath, click here.

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