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#### (MathPickle, 2019)

This game works because the top students do not have time to figure out the right answer so everyone has a chance to win. Keep the selection phase ridiculously short at 20 seconds.  The game is a great way to increase student intuition about the relative size of fractions. Enjoy!

Because of Omicron we have a lot of teachers absent and I am filling in all over the place. Yesterday I got to teach 4th grade math and had about 15 minutes to plan, and I knew the students had just started working on understanding decimals and connecting decimals to fractions.
I did a quick number talk in which the kids had to decide whether two fractions were equivalent or one was greater, and they developed some strategies like using 1/2 as a benchmark and noticing proportionality. We had a little discussion about whether 1/2 = 1÷2 and they had to prove it, then we played the game. It was great. Even though I had introduced it to them as “one of my favorite math games of all time,” I guess they were skeptical (understandable), because I overheard comments like, “wow, this is ACTUALLY really fun.” It was pretty amazing to hear the teams discussing their choices and how the game pushed them to understand fraction relationships. I could also reinforce the idea of fractions as division and the connection to decimals by asking them how we could accurately compare them, and then making a big dramatic show of typing each number into a calculator and slowly writing it on the board as they watched. Sometimes we rounded to hundredths but we also had to go into thousandths a bit so they got practice comparing and subtracting decimals to figure out who won. They did not want to stop playing at the end of class.
So, thanks for a great moment in the middle of some crazy times in education.
Amanda Fox

Math Specialist, Presidio Knolls School, San Francisco

#### Standards for Mathematical Practice

MathPickle puzzle and game designs engage a wide spectrum of student abilities while targeting the following Standards for Mathematical Practice:

##### MP1 Toughen up!

Students develop grit and resiliency in the face of nasty, thorny problems. It is the most sought after skill for our students.

##### MP2 Think abstractly!

Students take problems and reformat them mathematically. This is helpful because mathematics lets them use powerful operations like addition.

##### MP3 Work together!

Students discuss their strategies to collaboratively solve a problem and identify missteps in a failed solution. MathPickle recommends pairing up students for all its puzzles.

##### MP4 Model reality!

Students create a model that mimics the real world. Discoveries made by manipulating the model often hint at something in the real world.

##### MP5 Know the tools.

Students master the tools at their fingertips - whether it's a pencil or an online app.

##### MP6 Be precise!

Students learn to communicate using precise terminology. MathPickle encourages students not only to use the precise terms of others, but to invent and rigorously define their own terms.

##### MP7 Be observant!

Students learn to identify patterns. This is one of the things that the human brain does very well. We sometimes even identify patterns that don't really exist 😉

##### MP8 Be lazy!?!

Students learn to seek for shortcuts. Why would you want to add the numbers one through a hundred if you can find an easier way to do it?

Please use MathPickle in your classrooms. If you have improvements to make, please contact me. I'll give you credit and kudos 😉 For a free poster of MathPickle's ideas on elementary math education go here.