Hi there!

I am interested to hear how you start your math class. I find that the first 5 minutes of the class are crucial to getting your students to "buy in" to your class. Are they going to be engaged, are they going to try their best, and they going to have a positive attitude?

I am here to tell you about how I get my students engaged and thinking mathematically within the first 5 minutes of class.

I am here to tell you about how I get my students engaged and thinking mathematically within the first 5 minutes of class.

**Math warm-ups**! Have you tried them?
Transition times can be rough, especially in the social atmosphere
of middle school. Students come into your room, already fully engrossed in the
conversation they started in the hall. So how do you grab their attention while
prepping their brains for a period of math?

I have found the best way to start my math class is by using a short
and simple math warm-up. I know it can be a challenge to get through our
curriculum in the time we have with our students, but I can tell you that
taking the first 5 minutes to engage your students with a quick activating
activity is well worth it.

Let me backtrack for a minute and tell you how I incorporate math
warm-ups in my class. From the very beginning of the year I implement a math routine. Each day we start class with a different activity. Some days it can be
as simple as an optical illusion (kids LOVE these), while other days we start
with a journal entry, a brain teaser, or a number activity.

After a bit if training, students know what is expected of them,
and they usually get down to the task at hand right away. Whatever activity is happening
that day, the instructions are on the board/projector as soon as they walk in,
that way they can get started on their own without any support from myself. If
you decide to implement a similar routine, I can tell you that you will notice
a difference in your students. They will begin to automatically focus on the
day's warm-up as they enter the room, settle quicker, and get working sooner!

Today I am going to share a few different number activities I use
in my classroom to get my students engaged, while strengthening number sense at
the same time. It’s a win-win!.

**Spot the Imposter**

I love this activity! It is so fast and simple, but the kids will
love it. Tell them that they need to be math detectives and determine which
number does not belong.

*106 is the imposter, as it is the only one where the sum of the digits is not equal to 8*

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**Number of the Day**

Definitely not a new idea by any means, but often only used in the
lower grades. Select a number as a class. I often have random students roll
dice, or select from a deck of cards.

The great things about these activities is that they can be used
multiple times, simply change the number. Easy differentiation as well, as you
can decide how many digits to use.

**It’s all the Same**

This is a great activity that helps stress that numbers can be
expressed in multiple ways. It seems easy enough, but quite a few students will
begin to struggle once they have the first 5 or so. I find it encourages them
to be a little creative, by coaching them to make use of pictures, numbers, and
words.

I always have the students come up to the board and show one of
the ways they came up with, In the end, we usually have a lot more than 8 ways
represented on the board.

**Making Numbers**

I love this activity as it incorporates a visual and kinesthetic
component. Provide each student with a set of number chips, and have them
create different numbers using a set criteria.

I hope you found a few ideas that you can try in your own
classroom. These activities can be used in multiple ways as well, not
necessarily as warm-ups alone. Have 5 minutes left at the end of class? Use them as a wrap-up activity/exit slip. Have some early finishers? Use them as an
enrichment activity or in a center.

Interested in using Math warm-ups in your class? You can check out
my full collection of warm-ups in my TpT store.

I hope you give some math warm-ups a try this week! Let me know how they go.