Are you ready for some football? - Tales from Outside the Classroom

Are you ready for some football?

A couple weeks ago, I shared the centers we were going to use to practice some number sense skills and standards.  Welp, we did that.  And we quickly figured out that the kids needed a wee bit more practice.  And by a wee bit I mean we backed things back up, and we decided we needed to try some new strategies.

Late last week I put these together.  They’re working on a lot of the same skills (mentally adding 10s and multiples of 10s, 100s, expanded form and standard form) but a new one that we needed additional practice on that I hadn’t anticipated is comparing and ordering numbers.

 The set includes both two-digit and three-digit numbers.  This allows you to differentiate for your students.  Depending on how strategically you set this up, you can even have students practice working with negative numbers.

Some of the subtraction rules involve subtracting 10, 20, 30, or 40.  If students work with a lowered value number, they will end in the negatives.  This rocked the socks off of some of my high kids.  Of course that one that got it all without any of my help made me epically proud (and a little sad I wasn’t able to challenge him like I thought I would.)

 For many of the centers, these numbered football cards are used.  I kept things black and white (other than optional mats) to keep costs down.  And, since my colored printer at work never works, it kept me from printing them all at home.

There’s also a set of numbers in helmets.  These are used to match standard form and expanded form.  However, I plan on using these same ones next week as we are continuing to practice addition and subtraction with regrouping.

You can click on any of the pictures or go here to download the file from TpT.  



  • Looks great! Love how you use the same cards for different activities-cuts down on lamination and time to get it ready. I love how my students this year persevere-even when something is really difficult for them, they keep trying and don't give up!

  • This looks great. I am 2 months into school and loving how much the kids have finally started talking to each other about how they got their answers in math. We are piloting the Common Core for our district as California officially starts using it next year. At the beginning all they wanted to do was copy each other's answers and now they are getting excited about solving it in a different way from their friend!!! I love those light bulbs that I am seeing.

  • It seems like you and I are on the same team :). We are doing mental math right now adding and subtracting 10's. We just finished place value. I am curious, with everything that is on our plates, how often do you get to have centers?

    • I do reading stations each day and try to do math centers a few times each week. I don't just have set centers but I try to structure my activities in a centers format so the students are away from their desks and get a bit of movement.

  • I have had a smiley face theme classroom for the past 8 yrs and this year I switched to a SPORTS theme room and I LOVE all the easy ways you can integrate sport terms and motivation ideas into daily teaching. Excited to check this set out.

  • I'm new to your blog and just wanted to say "Hi". I LOVE the football theme! Everyday for the 100th Day of School we have a school-wide "Super Bowl" where classes compete all day and earn touchdowns. Your football activities would be perfect for that! 🙂
    One, Two, Three: Math Time


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Hi! I'm Tessa!

Tessa Maguire image

I’ve spent the last 15 years teaching in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grades, and working beside elementary classrooms as an instructional coach and resource support. I’m passionate about math, literacy, and finding ways to make teachers’ days easier. I share from my experiences both in and out of the elementary classroom.




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