Happy Mother’s Day :)

Let’s start this post off right!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the important ladies out there. These lucky kids have some fantastic role models, caregivers and supporters. Thank you for all that you do ūüôā I wasn’t able to see my own momma today, but living in different provinces for 15 years…we are kind of used to that. I’ll see her next weekend and shower her with her favourite things! I am also so lucky to have so many other important moms out there who are ready to give me a helping hand, some good advice or a little extra love when I need it. We are all so fortunate to have a community of strong female influences in our lives. I hope you all enjoyed your day…and the lovely cards your children made for you. A few of them let me snap some pictures for the blog!



I love the creativity and thought that has gone into these cards. The only criteria was to create a “card” with a personal message that reflects both you and your mom (or special lady you’d like to give a gift to). Amazing work!

Mental Math Strategies:

This past week we defined and practiced two more mental math strategies.

-Commutative Property for Addition: “The word “commutative” comes from “commute” or “move around”, so the Commutative Property is the one that refers to moving stuff around. For addition, the rule is “a + b = b + a”; in numbers, this means 2 + 3 = 3 + 2″

Commutative Property for Addition Video-youtube

We sometimes refer to these facts as “turn around facts”. This property also applies to multiplication (3×5=15 & 5×3=15)…but NOT for subtraction or division (in which cases you need to always start with the ‘whole’).

Basically… the order of the addends does not affect the sum.

Example: 75+25=100 and therefore 25+75=100

-Compatible Numbers:¬†Compatible numbers are sometimes referred to as ‘friendly numbers’ or ‘nice numbers’. Some examples of common compatible numbers include 1 and 9; 40 and 60; 75 and 25 and 300 and 700.

This strategy for addition involves looking for pairs of numbers that combine to make a sum that will be easy to work with.



6+9+4+5+1=25 (6+4=10, 9+1=10, 5 more)





60 + 30 + 40 =

75 + 95 + 25 =








*We see these types of questions a lot in our Number Puzzle books!

Students should be able to recall compatible numbers for 10,20,50, 100 and basic fractions.

Example: Compatible Numbers to 10

Students should use what they know about number pairs to 10 to help them with 20, 50 & 100.

Example: If 3+7=10, then 13+7=20, 43+7=50 and 93+7=100

*Pairs that “end in 0” are the “easy ones”.

Example: 10+10=20, 10+40=50, 20+30=50 (and we already know about the commutative property a.k.a. turn around facts so 30+20=50 and 40+10=50), 10+90=100, 20+80=100, 30+70=100, 40+60=100, 50+50=100…

It is the ones without the ‘benchmarks’ that cause grief amongst many students.

Example: 19+31=50, 23+27=50, 38+12=50, etc. But if you take a minute to look at the questions you will see some patterns from all the way back at compatible numbers to 10.

19+31: any addend that ends in a 9 is looking for another added ending in 1. Then think that one more to the 19 is 20 and 1 less than 31 is 30 and now the question is 20+30 which is easier to manipulate in your mind! Does this sound familiar to a previous post about mental math strategies?!!!!

It will take some time to learn the compatible numbers to 50 & 100 for some kids…but that’s ok. Just practice a little each day.

Compatible Fraction Example:

Think of it as simple as this. I have half of a pizza what other fraction do I need in order to have a full pizza? 1/2. Two halves make a whole.

OR 1/4 of an hour has passed. How much of an hour is left? 3/4. One quarter (or fourth) and three quarters (or fourths) make a whole!


We started division this past week. Things we know so far… that we can use Fact Families to help us with basic facts (if 2×5=10 and 5×2=10 then 10/2=5 and 10/5=2). 3 numbers turned into 4 number sentences! To divide means to share equally. When physically sharing a group of objects into sets we do it one at a time. Example: If there are 12 cookies and 4 people who each want cookies, how many cookies do they each get? Start by either drawing 4 circles OR getting ¬†something to represent the 4 people (these are the sets). Then share the cookies one at a time until you run out (either by drawing the cookies OR using something to represent the cookies). At the end each person will get 3 cookies. We can think of this as…

3+3+3+3=12 or 12-3-3-3-3=0 or 3×4=12 or 12/3=4 or 12/4=3!

One of our classroom stories helped us put some division into practice!

 (The Cookie Fiasco)

Let’s Talk Science

Earlier this week we had a volunteer from Let’s Talk Science come in to talk to us about what Science is and where we can find it and also do some Instant Challenges with us. So. Much. Fun! What a great program! Later on this week we will have W.I.S.E (Women in Science and Engineering) come to talk to us about Sound!

Ask Me…

This week’s Ask Me…question is all about homophones! We are noticing some mix ups in writing and in some Words Their Way groups and decided to have some fun learning homophones.

Homophone Video-You Tube

There, Their and They’re is what we started with…and this weekend’s homework was to think of and either draw or use them in a sentence to show the difference!

I can’t wait to see what we came up with. I’m thinking we can make a pretty fun display somehow!

What’s Up This Week?

-W.I.S.E presentation: Thursday a.m.

-Water Fun with our special guest!: Thursday p.m.

-Lake Winnipeg Foundation Presentation: Friday a.m.

-At least another 150 minutes outside!

P.S. Thank you so much for the kind words, treats and cards from Teacher Appreciation week. The Montrose Community knows how to make teachers feel loved!

Until Next Time!


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