Awesome Math Strategies for Kindergarten and the 6 Questions to Ask Your Small Group


Teaching math strategies in kindergarten may be easier than you think. Here are the top math strategies for kindergarten that you can use in your lessons and the questions you should be asking.

Awesome Math Strategies for Kindergarten to Try Right Now

I’ve got everything I’m sharing with you today wrapped up in my Guided Math Pack for kindergarten. That way you can use these math strategies for kindergarten easily.

What are math strategies in kindergarten

You should know that these math strategies for kindergarten came from the Kindergarten Common Core Standards. There is a whole section called “Mathematical Practice” that lists the standards below.

Now hang with me. Here are the standards as they are written out. They are {ahem} super exciting so I won’t be offended if you just want to jump past this list.

  • Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
  • Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
  • Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.
  • Model with mathematics.
  • Use appropriate tools strategically.
  • Attend to precision.
  • Look for and make use of structure.
  • Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.

Now, if you ask me – these are hardly kindergarten friendly.

But, as I planned out my guided math curriculum for kindergarten I realized that I needed to make use of them. I was supposed to be teaching them, after all.

How I made them kid-friendly

In order to make use of those silly-stated standards, I desperately needed to make them more kinder-friendly. So each standard got rephrased into a strategy or approach that we could actually use.

For example,

  • “Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others” became “tell and explain”
  • “Attend to precision” became “check my work”
Awesome Math Strategies for Kindergarten to Try Right Now - math strategy posters or cards

And those kinder-friendly phrases became go-to things for me.

I’m not kidding. Since I was introducing and using them during small group lessons, I was able to refer to them regularly and prompt students with them.

How you can use pictures to teach strategies

Since I work with beginning readers and non-readers in kindergarten, I made icons or symbols for each strategy. This works on the same principle as illustrating guided reading strategies.

Awesome Math Strategies in posters for kindergarten

I turned each strategy into posters and cards.

These were integrated into the math prompts my students did in our math journals. They would practice one strategy each time – at the same time as working on content.

Awesome Math Strategies for Kindergarten - built right into math prompts

Questions to ask your small math groups

What do these math strategies mean for teaching in small groups?

Well, that meant I had questions I could ask.

  • “How can you show what you are thinking?”
  • “What tools did you use to figure this out?”
  • “Tell us about your thinking. What did you notice?”
  • “What would make good sense?”
  • “What could you try?”
  • “What do you notice?”

Rather than tell my students what to do – or how to solve – I could ask questions to help direct their thinking.

Awesome Math Strategies for Kindergarten built right into lesson plan template

I added these math strategies for kindergarten right into my lesson plan templates too.

If you like these math strategies for kindergarten all done for you – you can get the:

  • strategy posters and cards
  • guiding questions to ask based on the strategies
  • math journals prompts with strategies listed
  • lesson plan templates with strategies listed

all in the Guided Math Pack!

If you like what I do here on KindergartenWorks, then be sure to subscribe today. I look forward to sharing ideas with you weekly.

More Guided Math

Awesome Math Strategies for Kindergarten - Easy to use in math lessons

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