Before I began homeschooling my children, I was a classroom teacher. I taught in a variety of contexts and grade levels, but I always taught Algebra. Sometimes it was remedial Algebra sometimes College Algebra, and everything in between. And I loved it! But it seemed no matter what level of Algebra I was teaching, there were certain concepts that challenged kids. And these concepts were ones that I had to review or reteach, even when I was Keep Reading...

## Equivalent Expressions Activity {FREE}

Understanding how to work with expressions involving variables can be such a huge leap for kids. On more than one occasion, I've had students tell me, "I was great at math until it started to involve letters. What's up with that??" What I constantly tried to convey to my students was that a variable is still just a number. When you're feeling stuck, replace it with a number to try and figure out what's going on. So if your students are feeling Keep Reading...

## Adding and Subtracting Integers {FREE Lesson!}

One of the most important concepts introduced in pre-algebra (or algebra) is integer operations. I can distinctly remember learning "the rules" and fun little tricks to remember them. But I also remember wondering why in the world subtracting a negative means you add! So when I saw this method to introduce adding and subtracting integers, I knew I had to try it. *Please Note: This post contains affiliate links which help support the work of Keep Reading...

## Online High School Math Curriculum Review

I am often asked my opinion about various math curricula, and I love to try out different options to help parents make informed decisions about their child's education. One thing that can be especially difficult is finding the right option for upper level math, particularly if you don't feel equipped to handle higher levels of mathematics. I recently had the opportunity to try out an online high school math curriculum called Mr. D Math. If you Keep Reading...

## Spring Themed Logic Puzzles {FREE!}

We've had a few days with beautiful weather recently (although at the moment the ground is covered with snow...) and it has made me completely ready for Spring! As I've been thinking about what kinds of resources to create and share in the coming months, I realized that I have not made any logic puzzles recently. These Spring themed logic puzzles are great for upper elementary kids on up, and provide a fun challenge as they begin to use algebraic Keep Reading...

## Valentine’s Day Algebra Practice Pack! {FREE!}

Having taught many different levels of Algebra over the years, I always have so many ideas that I want to share with you, but not always enough time to get it created and posted! So slowly but surely I'm starting to get things together and today I'm excited to share what I hope is a fun and helpful resource for Valentine's Day! This Valentine's Day Algebra practice pack covers many different skills for students to practice and review. As I Keep Reading...

## Exploring Surface Area of Pyramids and Cones!

As promised, I have another surface area lesson to share today! This builds on students' previous knowledge from the prisms and cylinders lesson to get them thinking about other three dimensional shapes: pyramids and cones. This FREE surface area of pyramids and cones investigation is a sure way to get kids thinking and better understanding area. It is also a fun, hands-on way to help them form a conceptual understanding, rather than trying to Keep Reading...

## Exploring Patterns in Pascal’s Triangle {FREE Printables!}

When I taught Algebra, there were lots of ways I loved to explore patterns with kids and help them make the connection between a number pattern, a table, a graph and an equation. One way we did that was by looking at fractals. Another really fun way to explore, play with numbers and see patterns is in Pascal's Triangle. The pattern known as Pascal's Triangle is constructed by starting with the number one at the "top" or the triangle, and Keep Reading...

## Brilliant Ways to Use a Hundreds Chart

In my shopping for homeschool curriculum this year, I was able to find all sorts of wonderful math manipulatives at really amazing prices (thank you, consignment sales). *Please Note: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. Feel free to read our full disclosure policy here.* One small thing I picked up is a hundreds chart. It doesn't look like much (mine especially, it's rather well used), but it's an incredibly useful tool for Keep Reading...

## Understanding the Distributive Property {FREE Lesson!}

I distinctly remember the week in 7th grade pre-algebra that was spent learning and (supposedly) understanding the distributive property. I remember this week so vividly because, for some reason, it made NO sense to me. None. At. All. Eventually I understood what it meant, and how to use it and apply it in the wonderful world of Algebra and solving equations and working with expressions. But I never forgot how confusing and nonsensical it Keep Reading...