Math Routines

Math Routines

I read a great book this summer that inspired me to explore new routines during Math class. I introduced one of them to the students on Wednesday and it went really well.

Here’s a example of what we did together, using an easier number. After modelling this to the whole class, I asked the students to show me 3 different ways to represent the number you see on the picture below. As some still had difficulty using method #1, I encourage you to practice this at home as well. Those who need support will also benefit from using a chart like this to ensure they understand the value of each digit.


In Grade 4, the students are expected to work with numbers up to 10 000. I usually go up to 99 999 as I like to encourage them to get out of their comfort zone.

In Grade 5, the students are expected to work with numbers up to 1 000 000. Just like with the Grade 4 students, I use numbers up to 9 999 999.

When I work with two different grades, I never do separate lessons. We look at a concept together so that those who need additional support or a challenge can benefit from looking at easier or more difficult numbers.

I really enjoyed this exercise because it is open ended and it allows students with different ability levels to explore numbers their own way.

I hope this helps some of you who are looking for ways to support your child at home.

Have a great day,


P.S. Can you spot the mistake I made? If so, don’t tell your child as we’ll try to find it together in class this morning. 🙂


2 thoughts on “Math Routines

  1. Hi Lina! Thank you for your feedback. As a class, we decided that everyone should come up with at least 3 different ways. Those who are done early can continue adding new ways. At the beginning, I suspect many will come up with simple ways and try to be done quickly but as the year progresses, more sophisticated ways will come up. This isn’t something we will be doing every day as the students will quickly get bored of this routine but for now, we are practicing it more often so that I can see who needs additional support. This can also be done with fractions, decimals, measurements. If you would like to know more about these routines, follow this link:

  2. Hi Annie,

    I love these math routines. Just one question. Do students required to know all the different ways to separate/combine the number, or they are encouraged to come up as many ways as they can?

    Thank you.

    Lina (TJ’s mom)

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