Let me start by saying, I love post-it notes! I can never have enough. I have plenty of them at school and home. We use post-it notes in our daily lives. Oftentimes, we use them to jot down notes or quick reminders. But today, I wanted to share how you can use them during your math class.

Today, I will highlight:

This post has plenty of example photos so that you can see how sticky notes are used to teach or reinforce a variety of math standards and concepts.Let’s get started! Here are 10 ideas to teach math using post-it notes. Since I like to spread the love, 5 ideas relate to the primary grade concepts (Kindergarten – 2nd) and 5 relate to the upper-grade concepts (3rd – 5th).

__Idea #1: Missing Addends__

__Idea #2: Odd & Even Numbers__

Odd and even numbers are primarily covered in 2nd grade. After students have a deep knowledge of what makes a number odd or even, they can use this sort using sticky notes to show mastery.

__Idea #3: Fact Families__

Learning about fact families can be a little dull. Spice them up with the use of post-it notes. I would recommend allowing your students to use manipulatives (ex. linking cubes) as a support to go along with this activity.

__Idea #4: Whole Number Comparison__

Comparing numbers is a skill that can get old. Make it more interactive by having students work with a partner and sort sticky notes into the correct categories. Have your kids compare numbers using benchmarks such as 10, 25, 50, 100, etc. You could also use this same format when comparing decimals and fractions.

__Idea #5: Graphing__

Graphing is a skill that is used across many grade levels. Pictographs can be especially tricky for kids in that they need a lot of practice with the key. Try using post-it notes to teach this type of graph. Increase the level of difficulty by modifying how much each stick note is worth (See example below)

__Idea #6: Rounding__

Rounding using post-it notes gives students opportunities to practice with a more than one numbers at a time. It can also be an easy to make center activity.

__Idea #7: Missing Factors__

Reinforce multiplicative thinking by using post-it notes to represent groups of items and then allow your students time to discover the factors that represent the picture.

__Idea #8: Area__

Build area models with base ten blocks and then have your students label their model using sticky notes.

__Idea #9: Fractions__

Fractions, fractions, fractions…. Students need on-going practice with fractions. In the example below, I used one-half as a benchmark fraction for students to make a comparison. This is a great activity because your students will need to reason and make viable arguments about how they sorted.

__Idea #10: Decimals__

Ordering decimals can be a challenging task for our students. Use this simple to create activity as a center to reinforce decimal understanding. Students arrange the post-it notes in order from smallest to greatest.

Mrs Mckenzie says

I use for combiningredients like terms having kids use a different color for each. Solving 2 step equations using 3 notes on top of each other for 3x

Lorie - Frogville says

I use post it notes in many ways, but you gave me a few new ideas!!! Thank you!!!

Greg says

Thanks Lorie! Do you have any ways that you use them in math that are not listed?

T Bell says

Thanks so much for this! Brilliant for reluctant writers.

jsegina says

This looks great. Thanks so much for sharing, but I'm not seeing the templates at the end of the blog post.

Greg says

Thanks! Click on "UPDATE: To download the templates above click here" It is a text link.

Greg

jiarms1129 says

I am a high school Algebra teacher. I use post-its when I am teaching linear systems of inequalities. As I graph the lines for the system, I use the post-it to cover up the side of the line not shaded, so when I am done, the only part of the graph showing is the part that is shaded by all lines in the inequality.

I Teach 1-Room School says

I use post it notes with my middle school math students in a more traditional way. I have them use one color of post it notes sticking out of the top of their consumable books to mark vocabulary words. They also write short one line notes (dividing fractions, for example) that stick out of the side of their consumable books to mark the "recipe" for how to do a certain type of problem. They remove the tabs after testing on each chapter.

HappyMathteacher says

Great ideas!!! THANKS FOR SHARING!!!

Joyfullyblessed says

I am a math tutor. Your suggestions are so useful. It is a colorful, creative way to practice math facts.

Greg says

Mel,

Thanks for asking. I do not have any products that incorporate multiplying multi digit numbers. I will be working on that in the near future. Please give me your email address so that I can email you once it is completed.

Thanks again,

Greg

Mel Jo says

Thank you for the free items!! Do you have anymore games or worksheets for rounding and multiplying multidigit numbers with decimals? I have e students really struggling in both of these areas.

Laura Shaw says

Hi Greg, what a generous and creative post. It's teachers like you that help to keep teachers like me inspired and encouraged. Thanks so much. ~Laura

Greg says

Thanks for your comment Laura. I appreciate it! We are in this work together. : )

Greg

Anonymous says

Love these activities! Thanks for the ideas!

Greg says

Your welcome!

Greg

Tessa Porter says

Mr. Elementary,

I enjoyed reading your post about how to use sticky notes in the classroom. In the past, I've simply used them to write encouraging notes on when students are taking tests. I never thought about using them in some of the ways you shared. They are a cheap and easy way to make manipulatives for students. I especially liked the one about charting decimal numbers on a number line. I liked Kelly Hall's idea of using them for division too. My kids don't do long division this year, but sometimes they line up their addition and subtraction wrong. Thanks for sharing!!

Greg says

Your welcome Tessa and thanks for you comment. I like the decimal one also because you can also use the same idea for ordering whole numbers and fractions.

Greg

Unknown says

I was looking for some way to reinforce odd and even numbers when I saw your email! Thank you for sharing! I plan to use it today for my intervention time.

Greg says

Your welcome! I'm glad you found something that you can apply in your classroom.

Greg

Anonymous says

Mr. Elementary- Great post! Thanks so much for sharing ways to use sticky notes and splitting it up into the two areas of el. ed.! There's something for everyone! I, too, would like to see Kelly's long division sticky idea… Bekki

Greg says

Your welcome! I wanted to share a range of ideas for all grade levels. There are so many more ways you can use post it notes, but I wanted to stick to just 10.

Greg

Kelly Hall says

I use sticky notes when teaching long division. It keeps them focused on one digit at a time and things stayed lined up. I love your ideas!!! Thanks for sharing.

Greg says

Kelly,

Thanks for sharing how you use sticky notes with long division. I would love for you to share a picture so that I can post on my Pinterest board.

Greg

Kelly Hall says

Here is a picture of my pin. I did a a quick post and shared your page too. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/282882420322015558/

Greg says

Thanks Kelly! Leave a link to your post. I am going to pin this to my Division board. : )

Greg

Tessa Porter says

Kelly,

Thanks for sharing your Pinterest link. I liked your idea of using sticky notes to help kids line things up but was having trouble picturing how it works. Your picture definitely cleared that up!

Tessa Porter

Wallis Bond says

I love this. Do you sell any of the templates?

Greg says

Wallis,

Thanks for asking. I just uploaded the templates to the end of the blog post for free. Hope you enjoy!

Greg