Math Musings – Episode 2

* Blog *

Challenge your math thinking!
Math ahead!

K5 Gifted is here to assist you in nurturing your gifted child’s growth and advancement. As an introduction to K5 Gifted, we offer these Math Musings to encourage your child to think like a mathematician. 

Please visit us frequently to stay updated, as we continuously add exciting challenges for your Pre-K through Fifth Grade gifted child. Our free resources change often and are only available for a limited time.

Today's Challenge

Today’s Math Musing is related to our Three Bears product on Etsy! In order to travel into the Math Musing maze (work the quiz), you need the secret word. You can find the secret work by visiting our product page.


Understanding Math Musings

I started Math Musings in order to bring some of my classroom teaches to our website. If this is your first Math Musings experience, please either check out Episode 1 or check out the overview below. We condensed the overview sections where it would be easy to skip over in case this isn’t your first rodeo.

For newcomers, here is the link for Math Musing Episode 1.

Things to Consider

Looking for things to grow your child’s mathematical thinking? You have come to the right place. These Math Musings are beyond the skills of the typical grade level learner. The referenced grade levels are designed for a gifted learner. A gifted learner will typically be working one to two grades above their actual grade level.

That being said, all children can benefit from these Math Musings, our Acadmey, and products even if they start at a lower challenge level.

For these to be beneficial, your child must have a productive struggle to grow as a math thinker. Make sure they visibly show their thinking. This means they need to write on a white board or sheet of paper. Be part of the process and make sure they show their work. Remember that parent involvement is crucial for your child to make the most advancement.

The guess & go method is not a learning strategy. If your child does not actually work through the problem, they are probably are not going to stretch themselves and make real learning progess.

I have worked with gifted students for many years. The learning strategies I am sharing are very effective. In math, it is not just memorizing facts, it is the ability to visualize and apply that knowledge that separates the truly gifted learner.

Many times parent’s and student’s first thoughts are, “that’s too hard”. That is part of the productive struggle. Making a perfect score or seeing how fast you can finish is not the goal. Learning how to apply strategies and thought to solving the problems is what creates the learning environment.

Put away the calculators and computers. Learning math concepts and strategies for the elementary student is far more than knowing how to punch in the numbers or memorizing facts. Tools that are useful include a white board, markers, pencil & paper, and pattern blocks. These will help your child work through the logic and help their reasoning skills. In the Academy we will also provide video teaches, lessons, and challenges. The Academy will be much more than math. We plan to provide all types learning opportunities for your child. In addition, our store will provide downloadable lessons that incorporate variety of subjects and learning that have an interesting story as their foundation.

To get your child started, I have provided a sample question and then some examples of strategies to solve it. Below are a few strategies to “show how you know.” 

Get ready to help your child “Think Like a Mathematician”.

Here is a sample math question. Following the question, I show you some method that your child might use to find the answer.

>> Sample questions <<
There were a dozen wild ducks that flew to the pond. Half of them got into the pond. Half of the ones remaining in the gross ate bugs. How many neither got into the pond nor ate bugs?

Use a whiteboard & pattern blocks to make a model.

Use a whiteboard or piece of paper to come up with math sentences that solve the problem.


Use a combination of strategies.


Ready, Set, Go! - Take The Quiz

Math Musings Quiz - Episode 2

Remember, you need the “secret code” to take this quiz. 

If you don’t know the secret code, read above to see how to find it.

Below is the quiz. Hit start and follow the prompts. Then select the gifted skill level grade you want to attempt. Even though, it is multiple choice, you need to first use one of the above strategies or another strategy to determine your answer. Do not just guess and go or use a calculator or computer to come up with an answer. Use your brain along with a white board or piece of paper. If you finish quickly you probably picked a learning level that didn’t challenge you.

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