Monday, January 11, 2016

Snowball Fight Multiplication

Are you looking for a fun and engaging way to spice up math practice during the winter? Snowball fight is a fun winter game that can be used to help your students practice just about any skill you can think of!

A few years ago, I had my students practice area and perimeter using a snowball fight type activity. You can read about that activity here.  But, for some reason, even though my students LOVED it, I never repeated the activity.  Well, that was until I ran across this post from Teaching Maddeness.  In the post, she talked about using snowball fight learning to help her students practice multi-digit addition.

Well, my students were working on double digit multiplication before the Christmas break, and I wanted a fun way to review what we had learned.  So, I downloaded her activity, but modified it for my class. Amanda has this freebie available in her store here.

Her set comes with pre-made numbers that you simply print off.  Alternatively, you can have your students write the numbers on papers themselves, but I found that her numbers gave a larger variety than what my students might have written on their own.  Besides, I think hers are cuter!

All the students had to do was crumple them up and ...


They were quite excited to hear that their teacher was ALLOWING them to throw things in class.

They each had to grab one snowball and return to meet with their partner.  They each unwrapped their snowball and multiplied the numbers together.  I asked each partner to first solve by themselves, and then check with their partner.  If they both had the same answer, they stood up for the next round.  If they had different answers, they needed to talk about it and figure out who was correct.

I was able to differentiate for those students who are still struggling, by having them add or subtract.

After the activity, I simply collected the snowballs for the next time!

What other variations of this activity can you think of?  Let me know in the comments below.

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  1. This sounds like fun! I would love to try this out with my students one day. Maybe they could throw single digit numbers in baskets and create addition problems that way. =)

    1. It was so much fun! You could easily adapt this activity to so many skills!

  2. Great activity! I love that it not only includes an engagement piece but movement and partner work as well! I will definitely need to try this the next time I'm in an upper grade. Thanks for sharing!

  3. What a great activity!!! Definitely engaging!

  4. This is a wonderful activity! It's perfect for this time of year.

  5. My room mother did this activity this year. We didn't use the math component, but my students would love it! They loved just throwing the "Snowballs" at each other!

  6. I just loved it :)
    And we can also use this activity in comparing numbers concept..

  7. What a wonderful way to keep them engaged. Students love to throw snowballs, I even had them scrunch up paper after any cutting activity and they would line up to see who made the basket. It got them moving and smiles everywhere.

  8. Great for upper grades with multiplying and dividing fractions.


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