Saturday, November 17, 2012

number sense in secondary education

Usually when I think of building number sense, I think about primary math education.  I know, though, number sense is something we all must work on all the time!  So I did some Internet research to find resources and ideas for middle and high school.

  1. Knowing how precisely a high school freshman can estimate the number of objects in a group gives you a good idea how well he has done in math as far back as kindergarten, researchers at The Johns Hopkins University found.  This Science Daily article is quite interesting.

  2. One of my first "hits" in my search revealed this book, Building Powerful Numeracy for Middle and High School Students written by Harris, published by Heinemann.  The Heinemann website has a brief description.  I plan to put this book on my summer reading list!

  3. If you are looking for number sense strategies and tricks, this website looks awesome!

  4. The state of Texas has a well-developed academic competition developed by the University of Texas - one of which is number sense.  Practice tests are available online here.

  5. NCTM has published several number sense tasks - with explanation in their Reasoning and Sense Making Task Library

  6. The state of Washington has posted sample number sense writing prompts for all grade levels.

  7. San Diego school system has posted ideas for number sense routines.

  8. University of California also published a workbook on number sense.

  9. Minnesota has published an interesting paper showing the progession of number sense through primary years to high school.

I enjoyed this research ... now ... how shall I build the recommendations and examples into my daily practice?  My students would definitely benefit!  I've read on other math blogs about daily routine warm-up activities.  I'm wondering if I might be able to restructure our warm-up activities to include a number sense routine as well as spiral review and introduction to the day's lesson.

I look forward to hearing about what others do to build number sense!


  1. Wow! What a great list of resources! Thanks!

  2. instillnessthedancingNovember 18, 2012 at 2:38 AM

    You are welcome! I love to research ... love having so much information at my fingertips!

    By the way - love your focus on a topic weekly ... it inspires my research and helps me in my work!

  3. Thanks for taking the time to look for these resources. Looks like I'll be able to add a few links for my parents and students.

  4. I second it! Delving into a couple of tasks I discovered a few GeoGebra applets. Way cool!

  5. instillnessthedancingNovember 18, 2012 at 6:36 AM

    Thank you for stopping by ... I'm new to GeoGebra ... hoping to explore it soon!

  6. instillnessthedancingNovember 18, 2012 at 6:36 AM

    Thank you for stopping by! And yes! There are resources for parents. Great idea to share the resources with them!