Hamilton students ‘gobble up math facts’

Families came to “gobble up math facts” at Hamilton Elementary School’s seventh annual math night Nov. 21.

Nyomi Davis helps brothers Mitchell, center, and Michael Mulry puzzle through a palindrome math game. Photos by Olivia Koester

Nyomi Davis helps brothers Mitchell, center, and Michael Mulry puzzle through a palindrome math game. Photos by Olivia Koester

Five sessions were offered, two geared more toward parents, as well as a complimentary meal.

In a session on multiplication and division and another on subtraction, Hamilton teachers brought parents strategies to help their children with math homework at home.

“We don’t spend enough time counting backwards,” Hamilton Math Intervention Specialist Jana Woody said, providing one reason subtraction is so much harder than addition for many students.

She urged parents to help kids think through problems rather than blindly follow an algorithm or use tricks.

Duane Gast and Marie Martineau led a technology session, showing families how to access math games on the Hamilton website.

Games are linked to students’ state test scores. “It’s really targeted interventions,” Martineau said.

Three rooms were filled with games, all requiring math practice.

Brothers Michael and Mitchell Mulry, 9 and 5, respectively, worked on a palindrome worksheet.

“On one, I got 10 steps,” Michael said proudly.

Little ones were drawn to a game called Free the Animals. Students rolled dice and subtracted one number from the other in an attempt to calculate certain figures, freeing their bears from prison before opponents did.

Staff served a complimentary dinner throughout the evening and distributed an ice cream treat at the end of the night.

“It’s very nice that they have this for families,” said Stacy Handeland, mother of a Hamilton kindergartner. “Play games, have dinner, have fun with your family … there’s no excuse not to come.”

The school gave away games, as well as two turkeys to keep with this year’s theme, “gobble up math facts.”

Olivia Koester is at olivia.koester@ecm-inc.com

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