Say goodbye to timed tests that stress out students and teachers! No more correcting, no more copies, no more stress. It’s time to find an appropriate way for your students to practice math facts and I think you’re going to like what I have discovered.
What is Sticky Math?
Sticky Math is a fun and new way for your students to practice their math facts in a developmentally appropriate and self motivating way!
Students receive a sticky math sheet. The students are racing against THEMSELVES and don’t have to share their scores with the rest of the class. This part is key. When students are feeling the pressure to rush through fifty math facts in one minute, they will feel anxious and stressed out. Why does it cause anxiety? It causes anxiety because they want to please their teacher and they want to pass to the next level. They also know that other students are passing to other levels and they want to keep up with their peers. This is not healthy or appropriate.
How is Sticky Math Different than Timed Tests?
Please don’t confuse timed tests with Sticky Math because they are definitely DIFFERENT. Sticky Math is not a system where the teacher is keeping track of levels. Sticky Math is not a system where students are competing to get to the next level. Sticky Math is not stressful for students.
Sticky Math is an opportunity for students to set immediate goals for themselves. Sticky Math is independent. Sticky Math is not corrected by the teacher but instead corrected with the teacher by the students. Teachers don’t keep track of scores. Students are trying to beat their own scores. The class moves to the different levels TOGETHER.
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How does Sticky Math work?
Students need the following supplies: sheet protector or dry erase pockets, dry erase marker, eraser, and one post it note. When the teacher says “go” the students solve the problems as quickly as they can. When the teachers says “stop” the students place their sticky note on the last problem that they completed. Then the teacher announces the answers to each problem and the students correct their own math facts-providing immediate feedback for the student and less work for the teacher. This process is repeated two more times. Each time this is done, the students try to beat their previous score.
How does the teacher know how students do?
This really isn’t a formal or documented process which also means that it’s not complicated or overwhelming either. The teacher walks around the classroom taking mental note of where students are getting by the end of the one minute timing. The student writes their total number solved correctly at the bottom of their Sticky Math sheet. This is another opportunity for the teacher to see their progress and ability level.
When do students advance to the next level?
Advancing to the next level is completely up to the teacher but the key is to do this as a whole group. Please don’t get caught up in the students being able to quickly answer ALL the problems before moving to the next set. It’s all about exposure, the opportunity to practice, and progress (no matter which level it is). Yes, you will have some students get to the end of the facts and then you will have some that only get through 15. That is okay. Gone are the days of holding those same six students back at +3’s all year because they can’t “get them all”.
What do you do about students who cheat?
I know what you’re thinking. What do you do about the students who memorize the first line of facts and just write down their answers on the next time they solve? Here’s my advice for this. Have the students erase their answers. Then spend some time talking about their goals, solving strategies…really ANYTHING! The point is to get them distracted long enough to forget those first set of answers. Still not working? It’s not that big of a deal! Why? Because you aren’t keeping track of their scores and they are just trying to beat themselves. The goal for this exercise is to provide an opportunity for students to feel success which leads to confidence…all while achieving progress.
Do you have a variety of sheets for each level?
Yes and this could be another solution. Since creating the original Sticky Math program, I’ve had requests from teachers asking for more sets of Sticky Math sheets for each level. We now have this option so if you REALLY wanted to mix these up each time they go through the exercise, this can be done.
What’s Included in the Sticky Math program?
The following items are what’s included in the Sticky Math BUNDLE:
- Addition Sticky Math Sheets (mental math strategies labeled)+0, +1, +2, +3, +4, +5, +6, +7, +8, +9, doubles, doubles +1, mixed
(4 options of sticky math sheets for each level!)
- Subtraction Sticky Math Sheets (mental math strategies labeled)-0, -1, -2, -3, -4, -5, -6, -7, -8, -9, mixed
Sticky Math Sheet with addition and subtraction facts mixed
(4 options of sticky math sheets for each level!)
- Answer Keys
Where can I purchase the Sticky Math Program?
Use the links below to purchase the Sticky Math program. Please note that the bundled option is going to be the most cost-effective option and will provide you with the variety of sheets for each level.
Are you looking for more ideas for getting your students to achieve math fact fluency? Check out more of my articles below:
- Math Fact Fluency Sticks
- 35 Fool-Proof Ways to Master Math Fact Fluency
- Powerful Teacher Tips & Strategies That Improve Math Fact Fluency
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For more math fact fluency activities, check out the video training below!