How do we elevate skills practice into something more meaningful and engaging? One way is to turn it into a puzzle!
Think about traditional coin-counting practice. Students are shown a collection of coins and they count the coins to find the total. They know all the parts—the coins—and they are looking for the total—the sum. So, how can we turn that into a puzzle? How about if we give them the total and some of the parts (the coins they can see) and ask them to find the missing parts (the coins they don’t know). That’s exactly what I did with these missing coin puzzles! Now, we are combining coin-counting and problem-solving, which embeds process standards (also called mathematical practices) into the activity.
Students can record their work in their math journals so you can check for understanding. And if you have students write about how they solved one of the puzzles, you’re incorporating mathematical communication as well!
One last note. Be sure to put some real or manipulative money in the workstation to support the kiddos! Click here to grab your free missing coin puzzles.
If you download and use this, I would love for you to leave a comment! 🙂