Webex and Mental Computation in Year 2

In Year 2, we have not only enjoyed using Webex to socialise with our teacher and peers but we have also been able to practise our numeracy skills including developing our mental computation and revising our mathematical concepts. Currently this is Subtraction. For the first few weeks, the groups were mixed abilities and therefore tasks needed to be more open and differentiated whereas now tasks are adapted to meet the needs of the learners in our Webex focus groups.

We use Paint or the Webex Whiteboard to share our screen with the students and play games and complete activities whilst being as interactive as possible during Learning From Home. Below are some mental computation games that we have played with our Year 2 students that can be differentiated based on their learning needs. All these games can be adapted to suit almost any year level.

Which is the easiest to work out and why?

One great activity was simply putting up all different equations and asking students to say which one was easy to work out and why. Less able students chose equations such as 20-1 and share basic strategies, while more able students chose the more challenging equations like 47-10 and justified their working out.

Difference Between

This activity was in two parts. On the number chart students were given two numbers and had to work out the difference between with SMART jumps. They then chose an equation to solve and place under an efficient strategy.

Number Bingo

We used a range of different spinners depending on the capabilities of the group. For example 51-100: https://wordwall.net/resource/467677/math/number-wheel-51-100 Students had to explain something they knew about the number before they could cross it out on their game board.

Heads and Shoulders

We went through the Seesaw activity where students had to read the worded problem and decide if it is an addition or subtraction problem. Once we did that if students believed the answer would be more than 20 they would put their hands on their heads or if they thought the answer to be less than 20 they would put their hands on their shoulders. This activity was adapted from Rob Vingerhoets based on student’s abilities, for example less able students did a similar task but focused on the answer being more or less than 10.

Get out of my house

For this game, the game board was copied into the Webex Whiteboard and each student chose their colour. Students start with 5 counters and the aim is to put all counters on the board first. The teacher holds up 2 cards and students add or subtract them. More capable students can choose any operation. As they became more confident, students were more strategic where they put their counters. If you put a counter on someone else’s house they yell ‘Get out of my house’ and their counter is removed and the new house is put on the board.

Good questions to ask while playing:  Whats the other number you can make?, Explain to me how you got __?; Do you think it is better to add or subtract the two numbers?  Why?; Is it a good idea to place lots of tokens on the one square?  Why/why not?; What would you do differently next time you played? www.lovemaths.me/operations-f-2

Taylah Dickson and Michelle O’Connor

Year 2 Teachers