Monday, 3 August 2015

Math Tip Monday - Back to School Math Ideas

I would like to thank K's Classroom Kreations and Theresa's Teaching Tidbits for hosting such a fabulous monthly Math Tip blog hop.  For the month of August, the focus is on Back to School Math Ideas.  I have taught all grades between Kindergarten and 6.  One of my most successful back to school math tip is to create glyphs for class decor and math interpretation as well!

What is a glyph you ask?  Glyphs are a pictorial form of data collection.  Students in school often create art projects that can be transformed into mathematical glyphs.  Glyphs are a collection of data organized in a way to help students get acquainted with one another at the beginning of the school year.

Here's my name glyph as an example:

Each letter represents something about me.  For example, the first letter is a checkered pattern. This indicates that I'm a "girl".  I ask the boys to use stripes.  The next letter indicates another things about me, and so on.  I usually provide at least 12 glyph directions just in case names are lengthy.  If the options run out then the students start over again.  

In the past, I have helped students trace letter shapes to make glyphs large enough to create a paper border across the room with glyph readings provided.  Here's a sampling of the glyph instructional chart:

This is a great back to school math icebreaker.  


  1. I love using glyphs with my students, too. Thanks for sharing your name glyph idea.

  2. Thank you Theresa. Glyphs are always a fun way to start of the math journey!

  3. I haven't tried glyphs in a while. It would be cool to extend this activity to characters from literature! Great way to analyze characters.

  4. Thank you! Love the literary extension idea.

  5. I love glyphs, but never thought of using them with names! What an awesome idea for the beginning of the year, thanks for sharing!!

    Megan Shea

  6. Thanks for your feedback Megan.

  7. I love this idea! It's a fun way to get to know your students. Thanks for sharing!