Focus on Math

Helping children become mathematicians!

Number Wanted Poster! May 2, 2011


This is an activity that I have used successfully with elementary students, and then hung in the hall as a great math bulletin board. The students provide information about whatever  number is  “wanted”.

Each student chooses a number to be “wanted”, but for this you can easily provide some parameters. My grade 2’s and 3’s usually choose mostly 2-digit numbers, but for older students you could require them to choose a multi-digit number, a proper fraction, a mixed number, a negative integer,  an irrational number, etc.. The chosen number sets the tone for the project.

I have students do some kind of pictorial representation of their number (I have them squeeze this into the left enclosed space): they might use ten frames, tallies, 100-dot arrays, number lines, and so forth to illustrate the number visually. For the “aka” part, students write a variety of equations for the number, something I have my students practice fairly regularly.

For the list with bullets, I have students write descriptive phrases about their numbers. Some starters for those lines might include these:

  • Is greater than…
  • Is less than…
  • Can be found between…
  • Is even (or odd)
  • Hangs out with…
  • Never can be found…
  • Looks like…
  • Is a multiple (or factor of)…

My poster includes a line for the teacher’s name since I work with students from multiple classes, but you may wish to change that like to the date or some other information you would like on the poster.

Download the template here.

The fun activity allows students to demonstrate their number sense about a particular number (and possibly a class of numbers).
I hope you will give it a try soon.

Mathematically yours,
Carollee