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Student friendly grade 4-6 rubrics

These are created for students and teachers based on the Ministry rubrics (2012).  We have used student-friendly language, incorporated our literacy cat images and used "positive" statements.

Grades 4 to 6 rubric

Math Thinking Strategies (K-W-C mat)

How do we use our reading, comprehension strategies that are integrated into our classrooms to teach math thinking?  Our professional partnership group used Arthur Hyde's, "Comprehending Math" to braid reading and math thinking skills together.  This mat is similar to a K-W-L literacy strategy and includes determining importance, connecting, asking questions, visualizing, inferring, synthesizing and accuracy as criteria.  This tool can be used for any problem, including the problems below and provides a structure for our problem-solving thinking.  We noticed that students stopped saying, "I don't get it," once we started using this strategy.   Cheryl is very happy to visit your classroom if you would like to try this.


Intermediate Thinking Strategies Mat (KWC)

Primary Thinking Strategies Mat (KW)

Student sample


Intermediate FrenchThinking Strategies Mat (KWC)

Primary French Thinking Strategies Mat (KW)

Math Thinking Poster

Partnership Summary


 Making Math Connections

Making connections in mathematics is often not explicitly taught and we assume our students do this intuitively....  Connecting prior knowledge to new ideas, in different, relavent contexts allows students to create elaborate networks of relationships / concepts in math (Hyde, 2006).  We build knowledge by making strong math to math connections.  Here is a soccer lesson to explicitly teach math -to-math connections for fractions, decimals and percentages.

We can also make math-to-context connections.  Here are two examples; an aboriginal art card combinations question using additive / multiplicative thinking and a canoe question, comparing the effect of shapes /dimension on area given a standard perimeter.  Linking the aboriginal content into our math lessons provides real-world contexts and deepens student understandings in both topic areas.

 Math-to-Math Connections Soccer Lesson Plan

Soccer Question and BLMs- English and French

Math-to-Context Connections Aboriginal Art Card Lesson Plan


Math -to-Context Connections Aboriginal Canoe Lesson Plan 


Determining Importance - A Math Thinking Strategy

We use the timbit, combination math problem (k-7) to instruct students about how to get information and acquire knowledge about the math problem.  We do this through whole class discussion, small group and individual practice with multiple problems.  Only once a student can determine importance can they begin to determine what they might do to solve the problem!

 Determining Importance Timbit lesson / solution with images

3 Parts of a Problem Posters

Determine Importance BLM

Timbit Question

Timbit Question en français

3 Parts of a Problem Posters en français

Determine Importance BLM en français







Visualizations - A Thinking StrategyAsking questions, making connections and visualizing, or imagining the situation occur in combination as we read.  Taught explicitly, this visualizing helps students comprehend the context and information within a math problem.  Mathematicians also visualize as we create mental images, or representations of our understandings. "Multiple representations also may provide deeper, more elaborate understandings of the underlying mathematics, and fresh, new insights into the  problem." (Hyde, 2006, p.87).

Visualizations BLM

Les visualizations- francais

Arthur Hyde's 7 Representations


 Math Thinking Strategies with a Fractional Thinking Problem

The Desert Survival Problem is from Arthur Hyde's Comprehending Math book and permits students to solve the question in a variety of ways.  The context is interesting, but NOT IMPORTANT to the math!  A great problem to teach determining importance, as well as visualizing, making connections, asking questions and fractional thinking (without ever having used parts of whole thinking before).  Remember that students can concretely represent this problem with their water bottles in class!

 Desert Survival Problem

Student Solution

6 Thinking Strategies Posters

Desert Survival Problem en français

6 Thinking Strategies Poster en français



 Vancouver Island Numeracy Network Inquiry Project

The Math Inquiry Template (MIT) is a tool to guide math thinking and instruction to focus on math inquiry.  The MIT weaves together math reasoning, literacy and inquiry and can be used for any math problem within any strand and grade.  The MIT provides differentiation as it guides students in explicit thinking and reasoning to create deeper understanding of mathematical strategies, reasoning and processes.  Information about inquiry and the MIT, the MIT (template) and a bank of problems, from easiest to most difficult are all posted.

 Math Inquiry Template (MIT)

French Template (EDM)

Information about the MIT

Bank of Math Problems

 MIT Process Poster

Enquete de maths - affiche

 *Available at the Printshop

Daily Math Investigations - BLMs en français

Nous avons apprécié la visite et les travaux de Sandra Ball cette année.  Nos profs d'immersion voulaient des feuilles d'élèves en français pour s'en servir de ces travaux dans leurs salles de classes.  Merci à Anita, Al, Joane et Cheryl pour ces traductions et à Sandra et Carole pour les avoir partagé!

Penser aux nombres; instructions pour profs

Penser aux nombres (BLM)

Jeux de maths (BLM)

Pentominos (BLM)

Tangrams, mosaïques géometriques, réglettes Cuisenaire


 Selina Millar (Helping Teacher from Surrey), has shared her work on Daily Math Intermediate Investigations, which provide an opportunity for our students to engage with meaningful math concepts, work with materials, to process, think and problem-solve as part of a daily math routine.  Thanks to Selina for her work in our district!

 Daily Math Intermediate Investigations booklet and some BLMs

Entry Tasks & Math Routines BLMs

Pentomino Duck

Pentomino Challenge

French- Pentominos

French- Tangrams et Mosaiques Geometriques



Apple apps for ipods, ipads, iphones

These apps can provide valuable practice and effective representations of many of the primary and intermediate math concepts that we teach. They can be used as whole class, small group, or individual student settings.

 Primary Math Apps

Intermediate Math Apps