Teaching numerical expression lends itself to engagement and provides students with a terrific skill to use as they learn, practice, and apply mathematical operations with numbers simple and complex.
Introduction: What Do These Expressions Equal?
Evaluate one or more of the expressions below in any order by hand or with a calculator. Giving students the chance to use a calculator takes away the pressure to remember facts and to calculate correctly. This frees up all students to reach for higher level learning in this lesson.
Also introduce this graphic shared by a former student:
Study and Practice
Net talk with students about what they can do to remember, study, and apply the Order of Operations. List their ideas. Then let them work with classmates to do all or some of the following activities plus any good ideas they've come up with that you want to add to the list:
- Create a mnemonic, poem, picture, or mini poster that will help you remember the Order of Operations.
- Watch the PEMDAS rap over again, then make up one of your own.
- Make up your own expressions and evaluate them. Check with the teacher.
- Write 5 different expressions and 5 different equations that equal 50 (remember expressions do not have equal signs while equations do). Use at least two different operations in each expression. Make sure you use every operation at least once. Use parentheses, brackets, and/or braces in at least two expressions.
- Use exponents in at least two expressions.
Related Grade Five Standards