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Math Monthly


View the video above about how you can encourage your students to look for and make use of structure, and check ParentSquare or contact your ES for the PDF of the included flier and poster!

April’s Strategy: Look for and make use of structure.

Math is a connected subject, and a form of communication. Represent math in different forms - such as words, a picture, a graph, an equation - and link them. Color code! (Boaler 2016)

  • At the youngest levels, help your students identify patterns in the world around them and represent them in multiple ways, by physically sorting, arranging, or drawing the categories they see. Encourage them to look for patterns in the way numbers go together - "Did you notice that 3 and 7 more is the same as 7 and 3 more?"
  • For older students, give them opportunities to discover formulas by recognizing patterns and putting language to them. Then, help them recognize those formulas as tools to help solve more complex problems. By using visual representations like base ten blocks or algebra tiles, they can see exactly why algorithms like the Distributive Property or FOIL work.


View the PDF to find a fun Pattern Talk activity to use with your family. For more details see the,  YouCubed Number Talk Lesson Plan.