Mental & Oral

Multiplying - mental and oral starter

How do you keep mental mathematics interesting? ...How do you engage children in 'estimating'? ...How do you make calculator work meaningful?

These are all vital questions, and finding appropriate solutions can become increasingly difficult the further into Key Stage 2 you teach! Read more »

mental and oral maths

Here's a versatile idea that helps children use and apply their knowledge of fractions or percentages in a surprisingly fun way. You begin by showing the children something that appears to be a word puzzle, but actually contains some covert mathematics. Read more »

mental and oral maths

This week we offer a PowerPoint presentation that takes you through nine separate mental challenges. Each slide is based on a puzzle that involves connecting a series of numbers so that the total is always the same.

The puzzles are based on a pattern of lines and circles. Like this:

mental and oral maths challenge Read more »

mental and oral maths

This is a straightforward mental and oral maths idea to encourage the children to use and apply their calculation skills. We've given it a small Mathsticks twist by utilising a unique visual resource, but more about that later.

Here's what happens.

A two digit random number is generated either by rolling two dice or selecting digit cards. This is the target number, and it is displayed on the board. Read more »

mental and oral maths

I always loved the idea of using the Magic Square concept with children since it offers so many opportunities to get to grips with problem solving. However, it always seemed to me that Magic Squares on their own lacked a sense of purpose; if they were set into a historical context, then that seemed fine - but purely as maths puzzles, they only ever seemed to interest a small number of children. Read more »

mental and oral mathsThis starter idea focusses on 2D Shape. In particular the properties of shape and the correct use of shape related vocabulary. Like most of our mental and oral starter ideas it can be used as a group or individual activity too.

It is related to the "Target Board" activity we explored in Mental Mondays #13

Here's how this one works. You show a grid of 30 numbered shapes: Read more »

mental and oral mathsIn our previous mental and oral suggestion (Mental Monday #12) we focussed on calculation. That activity involved displaying a grid of numbers and challenging the children to choose numbers to solve specific problems. Read more »