Author: Dawn Smith

Math: Performance Task in Action

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Principal Katrina Kelly recently challenged third grade students at Mullan Trail with a very special video Performance Task: Create an artistic mathematical array to decorate the hallways of their school.


Principal Katrina Kelly and third grade teacher Mary Pattis look over several student array projects.

Each array project had to be made up of multicolored tiles arranged in a artistic pattern.  The tiles had to touch sides and they could not touch diagonally only. The students then had to figure out how many tiles were needed and what arrangements were best. The winning third grade team will soon be putting in a work order so that boards can be cut and the artwork can be installed on the wall.

For more math ideas like this one, visit the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics website. Dawn Signature


Math: Using Math Tiles to Develop Number Sense

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Over the summer, a team of six Post Falls teachers had the opportunity to participate in a mathematics workshop in Kallispell, Montana. Marcy Cook served as the keynote speaker and shared awesome strategies for engaging students.

This morning West Ridge Elementary teachers used several of Marcy Cook’s Tile Strategies with an Engage NY mathematics lesson.  Coupled together, these math strategies not only develop early numeracy skills, but prepare students for manipulating technology-enhanced questions on this spring’s S-BAC.

Interested in learning more about Marcy Cook’s tile strategies? Please contact me at I’m available to work with entire staffs, teams of educators, or individual teachers.  

Marcy Cook’s Resources

  • Early Communicating with Tiles
  • Translations and Equations
  • Algebraic Communicating with Tiles
  • Add an Addend Tiles
  • Add/Sub to a Target Tiles
  • Fraction Comparison Tiles
  • Fraction Tiles
  • Decimal Place Value & Number Sense
  • Multiplication/Division Tiles
  • Place Value & Number Sense
  • Multiplication Fact Tiles
  • Mulit Jump Tiles
  • Place Value Tiles: Whole Numbers
  • Tens & Ones Place Value Tiles