It’s the little things: How I improved student participation in number talks

I know, this is silly, but silliness lightens the mood and can improve student confidence and student teacher relationships. It seems to reduce math anxiety and increase collaboration.

For a detailed description of number talks, read Making Number Talks Matter

Also read Fawn Nguyen’s site


Enter the Echo Microphone:

  1.  I present a math problem like 25 x 14
  2.  students have time to think
  3.  I get out the “Mic”
  4.  Only the student with the microphone can speak
  5.  the student shares their strategy (into the microphone) and I record their thinking on the board.
  6.  The best part: when they are done, they Drop the Mic


It is a small and simple thing that really makes number talks more fun.