Most current math textbooks come with digital content; however, that digital content is limited and doesn’t always meet every instructional need.  StarrMatica’s library puts the additional supplementary content you need right at your fingertips, and our math textbook search makes it easy to find supplementary digital content aligned to each lesson in your math textbook.  Here are a few ways teachers integrate digital content into their instruction:

Use manipulatives as whole class teaching tools or for individual student inquiry

There are hundreds of math manipulatives in StarrMatica’s library that can be used to help students visualize concepts.  Some teachers use them for whole class demonstrations with interactive whiteboards and some have students access them on laptops and tablets.

Want something other than fraction bars?  Try using Kids and Cookies to introduce fractions in the context of a problem.  How can 3 children share 4 cookies and still be friends when they are finished?

Want to try a new place value manipulative?  Try using this place value machine to let your students discover what happens to a number’s place value when you multiply or divide by 10.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/teachers/ks2_activities/maths/activities/thenumbersystem.swf

Are your students losing interest in your ten frame?  Try using bears in a boat to catch their attention!

http://www.glencoe.com/sites/common_assets/mathematics/ebook_assets/vmf/VMF-Interface.html

Use content to remediate for students needing extra assistance

If you need to keep up with a pacing guide, yet several students are struggling to understand a concept, it can be difficult challenge.  You can share content from StarrMatica’s library to help specific students with a previous lesson while moving on to the next lesson with the entire class.  Students can access the content you have shared in their individual digital backpacks during independent work time on computers or at home with their parents.

For example, if a student is struggling with identifying angles, you might share an animated tutorial with them as a review: http://studyjams.scholastic.com/studyjams/jams/math/geometry/classify-angles.htm

Next, they can practice what they have learned with this interactive game:  http://www.childu.com/sample_act/34math_backatyou.html

Use content to challenge students who are getting bored

It is always difficult to meet the needs of every student in your classroom.  Students are at different levels of understanding for every concept you teach, so while you are trying to help students with a lower level of understanding, those who “get it” can easily become bored.  You can share content from StarrMatica’s library to challenge those students, while still engaging them in learning the same concept as the rest of the class.

For example, if you have students who know their 2D shapes, have them play a game that challenges them to identify the mystery shape by eliminating shapes that do not have the given attributes:

http://www.learnalberta.ca/content/mejhm/index.html?l=0&ID1=AB.MATH.JR.SHAP&ID2=AB.MATH.JR.SHAP.SHAP&lesson=html/object_interactives/shape_classification/use_it.html

Use content to engage parents at home

Sometimes the way you teach a concept to students may not be the way their parents were taught the same concept.  Or, their parents may not have had experience with a specific concept for a long time and may need to refresh their memories. It can be helpful to share content with parents that will allow them to understand a concept and to give them resources for helping their children to practice that concept.

For example, parents could watch this animated tutorial about adding and subtracting fractions with unlike denominators:  http://www.learnalberta.ca/content/mec/flash/redirector.swf?url=data/3/b/a3b2.swf

Then they could play pizza parlor fractions to practice what they have reviewed together:

http://kevinmuma.com/software/pizza/Instructions.swf

Use content as center activities or extra practice for your entire class

Often, students may need more practice than what is provided with your textbook.  Or, they may need practice in a different format than what your core curriculum provides because of the learning styles and interests of your particular group of students.  Content can be shared with your whole class via their individual digital backpacks that can be accessed on computers and tablets for additional practice.

Try having your students practice finding factors in this game versus the computer or a friend:

http://illuminations.nctm.org/Activity.aspx?id=4134

Try having your students group cows to practice counting by 5’s and 10’s or to practice adding and subtracting with a partner:

http://illuminations.nctm.org/Activity.aspx?id=3526

How did these ideas work for you?  How do you use our library of content to supplement your math textbook?  Please share below!