Mathematics Grade 3
Strand: OPERATIONS AND ALGEBRAIC THINKING (3.OA) Standard 3.OA.5
This pattern search activity will improve students' understanding of the commutative property and associative property.
Math For all Seasons by Greg Tang
Navigating Through Algebra in Grades 3-5 (I Spy) Navigation Series NCTM
Students have been working with mathematical properties since kindergarten even though they haven’t been calling them by the formal names. You will be exploring some of these properties in this activity. Below you will see the name of the properties explored in third grade and a sample of each.
Commutative Property of Addition (sometimes called the Order Property of Addition) 4 + 5 = 5 + 4
*Commutative Property of Multiplication (sometimes called the Order Property of Multiplication) 4 X 5 = 5 X 4
Associative Property of Addition (sometimes considered grouping) (6 + 4) + 2 = 6 + (4 + 2)
*Identity Property of Addition 3 + 0 = 3
*Identity Property of Multiplication 3 X 1 = 3
Zero Property of Multiplication 3 X 0 = 0
* Properties that are introduced in the third grade core.
1. Demonstrate a positive learning attitude towards mathematics.
3. Reason mathematically.
4. Communicate mathematically.
5. Make mathematical connections.
6. Represent mathematical situations.
Invitation to Learn
Place transparency of p. 7 (ants) from Grapes of Math on the overhead or recreate it using plastic ants. Read "Ant Attack" from p. 8 and encourage participants to quickly count the ants before they are removed. Talk about their strategies. Write the numeric expression that helped them count the ants.
Math/Science—Create your own simple array and exchange with a partner. How many different ways can the simple array be partitioned? Can you record the different numerical equations?
Finish reading The Grapes of Math to the class. As a class, create a rhyming math puzzle and picture similar to the book. Talk about how it is created and how to find rhyming words. How would you give the clue in the last stanza? Ask students to work in groups to create a “group” rhyming math puzzle similar to the samples in The Grapes of Math. The group must also create a picture to support the puzzle. Combine the group puzzles to create a class book of “Mind-Stretching Math Riddles”.
Homework & Family Connections
Take a new blackline copy and the completed “Pattern Search” copy. Have the student teach their parent three patterns and the correlating numeric equations. Together, they can discover another way to write the numeric equations or find another undiscovered pattern. The parent should write a comment to their child on the homework.
See rubric sample.