StudyJams! Determine the Missing Operation Teaching Guide
Comprehending the concept of operators can be difficult for students. This lesson uses a variety of approaches including a web-based tutorial, real-world context, and working in cooperative groups.
- Grades: 3–5
Use a step-by-step tutorial to introduce a strategy for finding the missing operation in an equation. Students practice this strategy by identifying the missing operation in several classroom examples.
- Demonstrate understanding of increasing and decreasing power of operators.
- Test strategy to determine missing operations.
- Fake money
- Index cards: 2 per student
- TV/projector screen
- StudyJams! tutorial
Set Up and Prepare
- Connect computer to tv/projector screen
- Bookmark StudyJams! Determine the Missing Operation student activity page
- Pass out index cards, 2 per student.
- On the first index card, students write INCREASING on both sides and draw an addition symbol on one side of index card and a multiplication sign on the other side.
- On the second index card, students write DECREASING on both sides and draw a subtraction sign on one side of the card and a division sign on the other side.
- Introduce the concept of missing operational symbols with the StudyJams! Step-by-Step tutorial.
- Ask 3 students to come to the front of the classroom.
- Using the fake money, give the first student a certain amount (e.g. $5)
- Give second student another amount (e.g. $3)
- Give third student the “answer amount” (e.g. $15)
- Ask the class if the answer amount is an increase or decrease of the numbers of the first two students.
- Have students choose the appropriate index card: either + and x card OR – and ÷ card based on whether the number is increasing or decreasing.
- Once they have appropriate card, have them choose an operation: addition (+) or multiplication (x), (ex. 5 x 3 = 15)
- Continue demonstrations several times. Use process of identifying whether the answer amount increases or decreases as a strategy to correctly identify the missing operation.
- Students work with partners to create their own problems using their own fake money.
- Show StudyJams! Quiz to whole class. Ask students to identify the correct answer using their index cards.
Supporting All Learners
Using money to demonstrate the concept provides a visual aid. Working in cooperative groups provides students with an environment to help facilitate learning the concept. Using index cards allows students to participate without feeling like they have to answer on the spot. Advanced learners can create questions with double-digit multiplication/division problems.
- Students create problems.
- Students answer problems with index cards.
- Were all students participating with the index cards?
- Were students able to answer the quiz questions?
- Were students distracted by the fake money or was it an appropriate learning tool?
- Students use index cards to answer whole group questions.
- Students create problems in partner format.
- Students answer assessment questions.