I really like shopping the Teachers Pay Teachers back to school sale for bundles I can use throughout the year in math and reading centers and in daily lessons. In August, I’m always looking for the big back to school resources that can be reused over and over each week. Below, I’ve listed my favorite back to school resources from my TPT shop that may benefit you. Happy shopping!!
Back to School Resource #1: Worksheets
I don’t think there’s a single teacher out there that “loves” worksheets. But they serve a purpose and are good practice when used wisely. Whether you’re doing some whole group practice, assessing, or looking for spiral review for homework, worksheets can serve a great purpose in your classroom.
Back to School Resource #2: Logic Puzzles
If you haven’t heard of logic puzzles (also known as brain teasers), you are missing out! I use these in my classroom year-round for math centers and they are essential when practicing math facts. I always start the year with easier ones (addition and subtraction facts) and work my way up to using multiplication and division fact brain teasers by the end of the year. Learn more about the benefits of logic puzzles here.
Back to School Resource #3: Secret Picture Tile Puzzles
Something pretty new to the 21st century classroom is secret picture tiles. In these puzzles, students figure out the answer to each puzzle piece and then place or drag the correct answer on top. By the time the puzzle is complete, a picture has formed. Kids enjoy them and they make another great math center. These are available for every month of the year.
Back to School Resource #4: Balance Beams
Balance beams are really exciting for high students who need that extra challenge. The goal of the activity is for students to figure out what number each item represents so that each side of the balance beam can be equal. These can be used for kinder to sixth graders with choices like addition and subtraction within 10, 20, 100, 1000, multiplication and division facts, and multi-digit multiplication and division.
Back to School Resources #5: Room Transformations
If you know me, you know that I am an ultimate classroom transformation junkie. I do a room transformation every week in my classroom! It’s so fun to end each unit with one and I find they really help students see how math relates to the real-world. They are also great back to school resources to build that classroom community and show students how fun learning can be! I have bundles of room transformations for every grade level in my TPT shop.
Learn more about the easiest classroom transformations you can do in your room with low-prep here.
Back to School Resource #6: Whole Group Games
Building classroom community and sustaining that community during the school year is very important. I do this through the use of whole group games. It also “kills two birds with one stone” because I can practice a math skill and have students work together at the same time. Students can practice math fact fluency with addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
Back to School Resource #7: Math Spoons
Did you ever play Spoons with your friends as a kid? The goal of the game is to find 4 of a kind. Students each start with four cards and pass a card to the right constantly changing cards. The first person to find four of a kind grabs a spoon but continues playing and passing cards. As other students notice that spoons are taken, they quietly take a spoon too. Play continues until all spoons are gone. Math spoons can be played with so many math skills!
Back to School Resources #8: Fact Fluency
One of the good things to come out of teaching during the pandemic is access to more games that are digital. Students practice their math fact fluency with both printables and digital resources. Ensuring students have engaging resources is important for student focus. These fact fluency activities can be put in centers, assigned for homework, used digitally, printed when parents request additional resources, and more.
Interested in more math fact tips? This blog post shows my 5 favorite ways to practice math fact fluency.
Back to School Resource #9: Task Cards
I am a big fan of task cards (both print and digital). They can be used with games, as an informal assessment, as extra practice, etc. The possibilities are endless. I currently have bundles of task cards for all math standards for grades 1-3 in my TPT shop.
Back to School Resources #10: Classroom Management Reward System
Having your classroom management strategy ready on day 1 of the new school year is essential. I prefer to use classroom management tools that encourage whole group collaboration and build our classroom community. In this classroom reward bundle, students try to earn a certain item a certain number of times in order to achieve a reward. My class loves seeing our progress on the board each day and earns the incentive through helping each other, earning a good “grade” from specialist teachers, earning compliments from other teachers/substitutes, and more. You can see other classroom management techniques I have used during the pandemic in my classroom here.
If I had to choose a favorite from the above back to school resources, I’d choose my logic puzzles for math centers! You can try them out for free below!