Tag Archives: Fun Math Fridays

If… by David J. Smith

I saw this posted somewhere and thought it would make a good Fun Math book. So, I picked it up from the library. Even though I don’t usually review picture books, I thought this one was interesting enough to be worth a post.

Subtitle: A Mind-Bending New Way of Looking at Big Ideas and Numbers

Illustrator: Steve Adams

Published: 2014

Genre: nonfiction math picture book

Length: 40 pages Continue reading

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The Number Devil by Hans Magnus Enzensberger

I’ve seen this book recommended as a good math read aloud by Thomas Jefferson Education homeschoolers. I was intrigued by the thought of a math read aloud and got the book.

Subtitle: A Mathematical Adventure

Published: 1997 in Germany, 1998 in English translation

Genre: 253 pages of story, 262 pages total

Setting: the dreams of a young boy Continue reading

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Weekly Wrap-Up: This and That

It’s a new month so we started a new topic. We’re learning about the Constitution, but most of the books I requested haven’t made it to the library. So, I’ve got a random collection of books we used this week.

Our local library had one interesting book on the Constitution, We the People: The Constitution of the United States by Peter Spier. Spier illustrated the preamble to the Constitution and then concludes the book with some background on the writing of the Constitution. He ends with the full text of the Constitution and all its amendments.

Next up is a book I picked up for Fun Math Friday. I was looking for some inspiration for Fun Math Friday and found Edgar Allan Poe’s Pie: Math Puzzlers in Classic Poems by J. Patrick Lewis. Lewis took poems like Edgar Allan Poe’s The Raven or Robert Frost’s Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening and, using the format of the original poem, turns it into a math word problem. We read the original poem and then the math poem and then solved the problem (the answers are upside down at the bottom of the page). The problems aren’t difficult, but the poems are fun.

And finally, Miss Adventure asked for a book on where words come from. The library couldn’t find the book we used last time we looked at etymology, Camp Fossil Eyes: Digging for the Origins of Words, so instead I found Abracadabra to Zombie: More Than 300 Wacky Word Origins by Don and Pam Wulffson. This book is exactly what Miss Adventure was looking for. She can’t read it without sharing pretty much everything. Even Mr. Curiosity was getting in on the fun. This book is full of all kinds of tidbits, put in alphabetical order so you can find them more easily.

And those were the books we used this week. Linking up with Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers’ Weekly Wrap-Up.



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Playing With Math edited by Sue VanHattum

Subtitle: Stories from Math Circles, Homeschoolers, and Passionate Teachers

Published: 2015

Genre: nonfiction mathematics

Length: 335 pages of text, 372 pages total

Interest: I was poking around the internet looking for some Fun Math activities and found a crowdfunding campaign to produce this book. It sounded perfect for Fun Math, so I put in my money and eventually got the book. Continue reading

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Weekly Wrap-Up: American History Club

My friend and I have decided American History Club is something we want to continue this year. We picked some new time periods to cover, and decided to start back at the beginning of American history – colonial times. The first two books describe the interactions between Native Americans and the early colonists.

First off, there’s Weetamoo: Heart of the Pocassets by Patricia Clark Smith. The book is part of the Royal Diaries series, which aims to present the childhood of female royalty throughout the ages and across the world. In this case, the book is set in Massachusetts and Rhode Island in 1653 and covers some of the conflict between the colonists at Plimoth and the Native American tribes of the area, from the viewpoint of a young teen. It doesn’t have the most exciting of starts, but it is interesting to see how people lived in that time period.

The other book we read was Blood on the River: James Town, 1607 by Elisa Carbone. This time, the story is told from the viewpoint of a colonist, specifically Samuel Collier, a page to Captain John Smith. Again, we see the conflict between the Native Americans and the colonists. The colonists need the help of the Native Americans in order to survive, but they still feel superior to the natives. As with Weetamoo, you’re drawn into the reality of following the life of an actual historical figure.

Finally, we had some fun with our Fun Math Friday activity. We used our Gram Unit Cubes (my favorite math manipulative) to look at patterns in perimeter, area, volume, and surface area among cubes. We built cubes with one, two, three, etc. blocks on a side and then counted the number of blocks in each size measurement. Miss Adventure was able to figure out the pattern to calculate volume, without having to build a 6x6x6 cube, and see the relationship between side length and area and volume. I asked Mr. Curiosity to look at surface area as well, which was a very interesting pattern compared to volume that has many biological implications.

And those are some of the books and activities we used this week. Linking up with Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers.

Weekly-Wrap-UpIf you’re interested in purchasing the book, you can click on the cover image or title to follow an Amazon affiliate link to the book and thanks for supporting my blog!

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Weekly Wrap-Up: Botany

Not too many new books this week as we continue our journey through the botanical jungles. I did find an interesting picture book about an 18th century botanist, The Flower Hunter: William Bartram, America’s First Naturalist by Deborah Kogan Ray. This book provides information on living in the American colonies in the mid-1700s, as well as early botanical studies in journal format. Billy is eight at the start of the journal and he walks us through his life as a naturalist as he traveled around the American colony.

The other book we used this week was Playing with Math: Stories from Math Circles, Homeschoolers, and Passionate Teachers edited by Sue VanHattum. I bought this book to get inspiration for our Fun Math Fridays, and it is full of all kinds of ways to play with math. I will review the whole book one of these days, but so far I love it and I’m finding lots of fun things to do with the kids. This week we did Math Squares (also known as Diffy Boxes and the Ducci 4-number game). The kids enjoyed it and it was mathematically interesting enough my stats professor husband had to do some research on it when he came home.

And that’s all the new books we used this week. Linking up with Weird, Unsocialized HomeschoolersWeekly-Wrap-Up

If you’re interested in purchasing the books mentioned, you can click on the cover image or title to follow an Amazon affiliate link to the book and thanks for supporting my blog!


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What I Will Be Reading #17

The kids are still working on explorers and we didn’t get any new books this week. So, instead of writing about the books the kids read, I’m going to tell you what books I want to read. Not that my reading list isn’t incredibly long already. I just can’t help adding more books. Continue reading

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