Mind Boggling Math! Easy Prep Math Enrichment

A few weeks ago I posted some room pics on Instagram and I got quite a few comments and questions about this one . . .

Problem solving doesn't always mean word problems--and this math challenge activity proves it! Perfect for math workshop, for fast finishers, for math enrichment. Third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade. Addition and subtraction and problem solving.


I can't wait to change out these numbers with the new printed ones I just made! I still love the paper plate backgrounds, so the new numbers will slip inside instead of the purple handwritten ones! Check it out below!  (Perfect if you want to pin this for later, too!)

Problem solving doesn't always mean word problems--and this math challenge activity proves it! Perfect for math workshop, for fast finishers, for math enrichment. Third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade. Addition and subtraction and problem solving.

TA DA! My latest version...I LOVE that you can print and modify to match whatever decor your classroom has. I printed the numbers on green, cut out coordinating construction paper squares to back them, and then bought black square paper plates as a final frame. You don't need to do all that--but I thought it looked pretty slick!  So what is this resource anyway?

Higher Level Problem Solving and Math Enrichment


Truth be told, I had seen lots of teachers do different versions of Boggle boards in their classrooms--with both letters and numbers--but I hadn't seen it done in a way I felt would work with my class. What I REALLY wanted was a way for students to be challenged with different topics we were studying if they finished early, to use as a center, or to push their thinking. In other words--I wanted it to be useful more than just one time and I didn't want it to be busy work!

I spent most of the summer thinking about how I wanted to approach it, and finally, I came up with my plan. Sadly, I had already "built" my bulletin board before the plan was complete! I'm simply going to slip in the new numbers I made when I get to school on Tuesday.

Problem solving doesn't always mean word problems--and this math challenge activity proves it! Perfect for math workshop, for fast finishers, for math enrichment. Third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade. Addition and subtraction and problem solving.

What I created is an enrichment board that has 6 different challenges that can be done with it, and the challenges can be done in partners or solo. For this first set of challenges, students will be reviewing addition of three-digit numbers, but with a problem solving twist! Here is page one of one of the activities . . . I think you can see how this is NOT your ordinary worksheet! Students have to work at a much higher level of cognitive demand and focus--and they have to demonstrate perseverance, focus, and determination!

Problem solving doesn't always mean word problems--and this math challenge activity proves it! Perfect for math workshop, for fast finishers, for math enrichment. Third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade. Addition and subtraction and problem solving.

Each of the 6 activities is two pages long. Page 1 gets them working on a skill (like estimating) and then page 2 asks them to apply it in a more open-ended way. I am SUPER excited to see how my top math kiddos handle it! I think I'm going to make a folder system where each challenge gets a folder. Some students might do one--others might do all 6. In addition, I created a set of 5 additional "Mind Boggling" boards so that you can change the numbers out if you wish! We start the year with place value and addition and subtraction review, so this is going to be a perfect complement.

What I really love is that I have begun jotting down my plans for a more simple version using 2 digit numbers, a decimal set, and a money set! As my units change, I can super easily change the board and the activities will be ready to go. The letters to spell "Mind Boggling Math" are included as well if you want to create a display, but EVERYTHING the students need is on the challenge pages so you do not have to have a permanent area in your classroom.

Anyhoo--just thought I'd share! I'm super excited to share this with you! If you are interested in checking these "Mind Boggling Math" resources, click the images below to see!

Problem solving doesn't always mean word problems--and this math challenge activity proves it! Perfect for math workshop, for fast finishers, for math enrichment. Third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade. Addition and subtraction and problem solving.
Now available in TWO digit addition as well!

Problem solving doesn't always mean word problems--and this math challenge activity proves it! Perfect for math workshop, for fast finishers, for math enrichment. Third grade, fourth grade, second grade. Addition and subtraction and problem solving.
and....a Decimals and Money version!

Problem solving doesn't always mean word problems--and this math challenge activity proves it! Perfect for math workshop, for fast finishers, for math enrichment. Third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade. Addition and subtraction and problem solving, money and decimals








8 comments

  1. Loved this idea, Meg! I pinned it so I can share it with my team. Good luck on Tuesday!

    Jennifer
    Mrs. Laffin's Laughings

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    1. Thanks! Looking forward to seeing how my students tackle it! :)

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  2. What a great idea! I have added Mind Boggling Math to my wish list! Thanks!
    -Lisa
    Grade 4 Buzz

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    1. Awwww! Thanks, Lisa! Can't wait to see how my kids do this week!

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  3. Once again, love your ideas! Since reading your blog post this morning, I've been thinking about where to put a mind boggling bulletin board.

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    1. Thanks, Lyn! I squeezed it in a corner of a bigger board, but a friend of mine is putting hers on the back of a door and another one is just using the one-page version because she doesn't have the wall space!

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  4. OK, I keep happening upon your blog posts LOL! I really, really, really would love to go back to school and be in your math class! I might have liked it (unlike when I was in school). :))) I just got this inspiration from your Mind Boggling board. I could really do this in my classroom, which has learners from preschool to high school. I of course will need some different things for the younger learners, but my older three could use your ideas just like they are! Thanks for sharing and creating!

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    1. That is such a nice thing for you to say...I do really love teaching math. I am excited to hear how you can use some of my ideas even with a very diverse group! I am actually working on a lower number version AND a version with decimals for older kids!

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