2D Shapes Quadrilaterals (FREE Google Classroom Template Download!)

Here is a FREE download for a project for students to collaborate using Google Classroom, Google Slides, and Google Drawings.

Topic: Understanding Two-Dimensional Shape Properties: Quadrilaterals

Standard: 5.G.3b

Student Slide Example:


Self-Paced Directions and Resources Provided:



  1.  Copy this link— 2D Shapes- Quadrilaterals
  2. Then you MUST go to “File” and  “Make A Copy”.


Now it’s yours to use and make any changes. 



Data & Statistics For Preschoolers!

Data and statistics are about collecting information and analyzing it. Your toddler or preschooler can start learning these critical-thinking skills by categorizing and comparing objects and toys.

Try categorizing by colors, size, and type.

Here is an example of blocks sorted by color. Stack objects together to start modeling graphs, or visuals.

Have your child count each category.


The most important step working with data is the “So What?”  This is where kids learn to think and analyze critically.

For a younger child, try asking these questions:

  • Which category has the most? The least?
  • Why do you think there is more of one than the other?
  •  Is there a category that doesn’t seem to belong?
  • Are we missing any that we didn’t organize?

These questions will later turn into analyzing questions such as:

  • What will “typically” happen (measured by mean, median, and mode)?
  • What variables or factors would cause one category to be more or least common?
  • Is there important data not included?
  • Is there an outlier, or an extremely irregular number?


Data and statistical learning doesn’t have to be for older kids.  Start exploring and analyzing data early!

 © MathMom.org


3 Ways To Master Multiplication Without Memorizing

By middle school students are expected to know their multiplication facts 1-12 fluently.  However, many students can’t memorize all of them.  In fact, students who are good problem solvers are often the students who don’t memorize, but rather know them through other methods such as modeling, repeated addition, and working from facts they do know.


A common multiplication fact that many students struggle with is  8 x 7.   To get a deeper understanding, start with modeling this with pictures. For example, there are 7 soccer teams with 8 players on each team.   Have your child count until they get 56 or a total of 56 players.

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Repeated Addition

Practice with modeling should lead to the idea of repeatedly adding the same number.  Multiplication is repeated addition.  After modeling over and over, students start to realize they are doing this:

8 + 8 + 8 + 8 + 8 + 8 + 8 = 56      OR     7 + 7 + 7 + 7 +7 + 7 + 7 + 7 = 56

I tell me students this is fair game and to add every time if they need to.

Already Known Multiplication Facts

Repeated addition leads to another strategy students can do without having to memorize all facts.  Let’s say your child knows their 5 multiplication facts well.  They can use this knowledge to count to the others they struggles with.  Let’s use 8 x 7 again.  If they know 8 x 5 = 40 then they just need two more groups of 8 to get to 8 x 7.   Most students get faster at doing this in their heads.  I will have students make flashcards like these with that facts they struggle with.

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Here is another example:

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Summer Challenge! PATTERNS

Summer is BUSY and so are PATTERNS!  Challenge your child to create patterns based on color, size, shape, and category out of toys, kitchen utensils, treats, and more.  Increase difficulty for older kids. 

Here is an example of a color pattern I gave my son:


He had to continue the color pattern (not sizes). 

This excercise reinforced his knowledge of colors and challenged him to follow the rule of pattern! 

Here is a list of ideas to help you come up with your own patterns:

  • Blocks
  • Legos
  • Tupperware 
  • Lids
  • Spoons and forks
  • Candy
  • Shapes
  • Balls
  • Puzzle pieces 

© MathMom.org

A Clever Way To Understand AREA

The idea behind AREA is a basic concept that most students, and even adults, don’t understand.  Most people know to label area with square units such as 30 square feet.  But WHY?

The area of a shape or room is simply describing how many actual squares (measured by feet, meters, or another unit) that fit inside the shape.  Most students learn that area is what’s “inside the shape” but they don’t connect it with the physical squares it takes to fill it up.

For example, if a living room measures 10ft by 12ft, the area is 120 sq ft. That means 120 squares that are a foot by a foot would fit inside like a PUZZLE. 

Here is a great way to start piecing together a PUZZLE that demonstrates the foundation of AREA!

These foam pieces connect to make a rectangle measuring 2 pieces by 3 pieces.  It’s area is 6 sq. pieces. Meaning, to fill the shape it would take 6 squares, which can be easily observed.



Here is another example using foam mats. This rectangle is measuring 3 pieces by 4 pieces giving it’s area 12 sq. pieces.  Have your child count the actual squares connected, which should come to 12!

Look for other examples of area using squares!

© MathMom.org

5 Tips To Raise Your Child To Like Math  

Having a good attitude is essential in being successful with math!  Start now and use these strategies to raise your child to not HATE math but LIKE it!

1. Apply It; Use It–  A topic is never interesting if it doesn’t have a purpose.   For example, use cooking to demonstrate fractions, money for decimals, the grocery store for unit rate, toys for counting, real-life shapes for geometry, and more.   Make sure YOU are doing math so your child can see how practical and helpful it is.

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2. Encourage trial and error-  Growth in math relies on failing.  Failure is GOOD in math if you learn from it!   My students learn more when they fail and are interested in fixing what they did wrong than those who just want to be right and move on.  Give your child a challenge, let them try FIRST, then give them tools to try AGAIN, and lastly walk through the correct way to solve the problem.

For example, I was working with my son on identifying his numbers.  He saw the picture of  9 and couldn’t tell me the number.  I told him to try it.  He said, “Well, it’s green.”  I told him that’s true and to try to remember the number again.   He said “Six?”.  I replied, “I see why you think that looks like 6 but that’s not it”.   We started counting and I stopped at 8.  He continued to 9 and said that’s it.

3.  It’s not about you-  Let me say it again, it is not about you! Make sure you’re not setting an example of a BAD attitude!!!!  It doesn’t matter if you hate math or were not good at it.  STOP talking badly about math!

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4. Related to something interesting- I had a student a few years ago who was a fanatic about a certain TV show.  He knew every fact about the characters and episodes.  I would translate test questions about fractions and decimals and use the characters from the show.  His brain took off like a wildfire and the problem seemed less foreign to him.

5. Get physical- Model or demonstrate a math problem as much as possible.  Visuals and hands on practice are vital to exploring, understanding, and retaining math concepts.



© MathMom.org

Using LEGOS to Introduce Fractions!

Legos are wonderful toys that can be used for more than building.  They can be used for counting, color ratios, AND as an introduction to fractions.

Before we start we need to understand that what we call a “whole” can vary.  For example, if you offer someone a whole candy bar one person might think of a King Size and someone else might think of a Fun Size.  With Legos, we can count each color as a whole or a single unit (1, 2, 3…).  We can also change the unit we are counting by (1/3, 2/3, 3/3).

Here is a basic example of using Legos to talk about fractions.


This example illustrates equivalent fractions.


Here is one more to get you thinking about making fractions out of toys!



© MathMom.org