Steve Wyborney is an award-winning teacher and instructional coach from Oregon. He is well known for his use of instructional technology and his work with mathematics and his passionate belief in the exceptional potential of every student. In 2005, Steve was named the Oregon Teacher of the Year.
Steve is also the author of the 25 Common Core Math Lessons for the Interactive Whiteboard series for grades 1-6 (Scholastic). If you are interested in this series, you simply need PowerPoint and a projector in your classroom.
Steve's most recent book The Multiplication Advantage is an interactive workbook that help students enjoy learning multiplication and offers teacher support.
Steve's most recent series Week-by-Week Math Review for the Digital Classroom (grades 1-6) was just released on June 1. Like the earlier series, you simply need PowerPoint and a projector to use this resource.
Steve's ebook, "Long Division Made Easy," is an animated e-book available through Scholastic.
Our school district is calling for teachers to present great math strategies at the upcoming summer conference: Inspiring Mathematicat Minds- and nothing has been more inspiring to my student’s math minds than the SPLAT, estimation, and maze activities…I was wondering if it would be possible to get permission from you to do a workshop style “presentation” to demonstrate how I use your resources to inspire K-2 students in my own classroom? (I would of course provide all your info and links to your work/blog and anything else you request…)
Hi, Erin. Yes, this is absolutely fine with me. Thank you for spreading the math joy!
I’m looking for the original 51 Esti-mysteries, is there a place to find those?
Here is the link to 51 Esti-Mysteries: https://stevewyborney.com/2019/09/51-esti-mysteries/
I have a similar request to what “Mel H” asked in May this year. I too work in a state run Department of Education system. We are currently preparing a suite of teaching units to support the introduction of a new syllabus. Some of my team have identified your Esti activities as strong connections to certain outcomes. We would like to reference your work, as well as some supporting images. Would you mind if we referenced your Esti-lesson with 1-2 images from the “You cant see all the cherries” and “Cup of berries” ? The website I have included below is where we have published the first quarter of our 2023 units (= 25, with more to come soon!)
I look forward to hearing from you.
Thank you for reaching out – and greetings from here in Oregon in the US. Yes, this is fine. If you could include the website in the materials that would work well, and it should be easy to do since it is already on the image. Thank you for the honor of being included in the materials!
All my best,
My Grade 4 students are wondering if you could add a slide to the esti-mysteries that show the contents of the container laid out so they can actually count them. Sometimes they find it hard to believe the number of items that fit in certain containers lol!
Hi, Angela. That’s a great suggestion. I don’t have any designed like that for the pictures I’ve taken – and the contents put away afterward – but I do love the idea. Sometimes when students create their own they will do that. I’ve even recently seen one with a top view picture included, which I love.
Hi Steve! I wanted to echo Mrs. Woods’ message! We could not believe that esti-mystery #7 was 49. We are convinced it is 29 objects! They wanted me to contact you and ask!
Hi. Thanks for the question. That is one of my favorite Esti-Mysteries, partly because of the bubble (the hole) that appeared when the dice jammed in it, but also because I made that one with my daughter. The dice jam has 47 in it, which is the number under the reveal box. I’m so glad your class is trying out the Esti-Mysteries. Sometimes there is a number that really surprises students, so I encourage them to picture what it might look like from the back, and to consider how many objects can’t be seen by the camera. They might enjoy making their own Esti-Mysteries and sharing them with each other. That’s a really rich activity. Wishing you all a great day.
I am creating a document for the a Department of Education and I am giving suggestions for activities that will enhance mathematical discourse. I’d like to reference Splat and Esti-mysteries and of course cite your resources. Is that allowable? Also, I’d like to include a picture of a splat or an esti-mystery, again, giving full credit. Is that allowed? If so, how would I cite this?
Hi, Melanie. Yes, this is fine with me. I’m honored! As far as citation, specific to this request, please include my name, the name of the post, the live link to the post, and the date on which the blog post was created. Thank you for reaching out and asking.
My class is confused on why the partial products box is on the concept maps. I told them it was so that they could see what comes before and what comes after the equation. They are still questioning? Can you help?
Hi, Karen. This is such a great question. There are a few reasons I’ve set it up that way. One main reason is that the square numbers did not get their own concept maps, so this format always makes sure that 2 square numbers appear on every concept map. Another reason is that square numbers are often far more important than they initially appear. One small example (which is understood through later math, but isn’t apparent at first) is that if you are looking at 2 factors on the map (say 5 and 9, so a connection is 45) is that 5/9 of 45 is a square number, and 9/5 of 45 is a square number – and those are both shown on the map. This relationship is always true, and it may make an interesting exploration for your students. Again, that is a smaller detail and is easily explained through later math, but it is intriguing. Overall, the answer that may be most useful is that the square numbers did not get their own concept maps and this was a clear way to include them while also opening the door to even more connections
We got it! Thank you so much! My kids LOVE your multiplication course.
2 questions and a comment. Does the 100 chart interactive maze work in google slides? I have not been successful there. Have you, or would you consider creating the same interactive maze with a 120 chart?
And a comment: mahalo nui loa (thanks a lot!) for all of the resources that you provide teachers. They have changed math outcomes for students and changes teachers understanding of mathematics as well. Your work is so appreciated!!
Hi, Wendy. Thank you for this comment and your kind words. The interactive 100s chart works in PowerPoint, but unfortunately I created it before I started working with google slides. I’ve used a specialized animation in PowerPoint that I’ve never been able to duplicate in slides. If I could figure out how to make it work I certainly would make one in Slides, and if so, I would also make it a 120 chart. I’m just one animation away from figuring out how to do it.
Would you please check this link? Day 6 – Exclusive Splat Sequences
My class and I are completing the 20 Days of Number Sense and Rich Math Talk series, but this file is blank. Any advice or guidance would be appreciated. Thank you so much!
Hi Kathleen. Thanks for the message. Can you check it again, clicking the blue link? I’ve downloaded it a few times and I think it’s working. It’s possible it’s going to your download folder.
My 2nd grade class loves to complete an esti-mystery every Friday for Funday Fridays. Today we actually completed one on Thursday. We have a question. Esti-Mystery-217-That-is-a-Lot says the answer is 95 spheres in the glass. Can you help me and my students understand why the answer is not 50? We looked and reread all the clues. We think in addition to 95, there could also be a possible answer of 50 based on the clues. We are super curious about the possible answer.
Mrs. Vidrio’s Class
Hi, Melissa. Thank you for reaching out with this question. Esti-Mystery217 eliminates all of the numbers except for 50 and 95. Esti-Mysteries always leave 2 (sometimes 3) reasonable choices at the end for students to discuss. Otherwise it would spoil the final estimation opportunity prior to the reveal. Then the actual number is given at the end. In this case, the actual count is 95. Since my rule is to triple count everything, you can imagine that it took quite a while to count out all 95 of those and then to make certain that was the exact total. A funny thing about that one is that those white foam balls are so surprisingly light.
What you might do with this one is pull up the picture and number every one of the white spheres that you can see. Even number the ones that you can only see a very small part of. I think your students will be surprised at how many are actually in sight. Then pose the question, “How many are in the container that we can’t see?” I think you’ll have a pretty interesting class conversation. I hope this helps.
I would really like to purchase your Long Division Made Easy. I live in Canada so I can’t order it on Scholastic.com because it will not accept my Canadian address. Is there another way to order this? I love your teaching methods by the way 🙂 My students and I talk about “Steve” and what he’s given us, all the time 🙂
Hi, Angela. I was surprised to hear this since it’s in an ebook format. I just noticed that it’s out of stock on the Scholastic site, so I’m not sure how to make it available in this situation. I truly, deeply wish I had a better answer.
I was just introduced to your work. It’s exciting, challenging, and fun. Could you give me information as to how we might have you visit for math PD?
Hi, Jeanne. Thanks for the note. You can reach me at email@example.com for more information about PD.
We went 100% virtual from March 2020 to March 2021, and are just now getting back to in-person instruction. Your Esti-Mysteries and multiplication course were true Godsends for us this year! Our students loved the activities and truly have a deeper sense of number and multiplication concepts now. Do you have anything similar to the multiplication course for addition and subtraction with regrouping (particularly with larger numbers)?
Amy, I’m glad you love the multiplication course on YouTube and the Esti-Mysteries. I designed the both to be very helpful during this challenging time. I don’t have any course focused on addition and subtraction at this time.
Thank you very much ! Your work helps me to change the way of exploring fact numbers with my pupils.
You inspires empowerment and efficiency.
This is wonderful to hear. You are very welcome.
Thank you for these. My Grade 6/7 class loves the estimation mystery puzzles. They look forward to every Thursday and have so much fun with them.
Thanks, Liz! I’m so happy to hear this.
Your resources are absolutely amazing! My daughter is in 2nd grade at the school where I work as an instructional coach, and we purposely get to school early enough to do an esti-mystery together before the bell rings :). Today, while doing the 1-2 grade esti-mytery Space Balls we found an error. Clue four says that the answer contains the digits 5 or 6, but the answer is actually 99. We wanted to let you know, but we were also excited because 99 was the number we had narrowed it down to!
Hi, Sara. Thank you for letting me know! I just posted an updated version of that Esti-Mystery with the corrected clues. Nice job on solving it! I’m grateful that you let me know.
Thank you for all of your amazing resources! My kinders LOVE your estimation mysteries! Do you have a YouTube video showing how you make those in PowerPoint? I would like to be able to make more for my class.
Hi, Dani. I don’t have a YouTube video on it, but I do have a course that I’m sharing out with blog subscribers – putting on sale this evening through May 13. It has all the templates and the clue toolkit that I use, it explains everything with videos, and even comes with 189 already created Esti-Mysteries and 50 additional pictures I’ve created.
Hi Steve! My students really enjoy the Estimysteries, Estimation Clipboards, and Splats (our new favorites the recently discovered Red Splat) We spend time almost every day doing one of these and my students have been creating their own Estimysteries and Estimation Clipboards for the class (and myself) to solve. These have led to many discussions including those students who dispute the number of items that you actually have in the jars/containers. :):) My favorite is, ‘There is no WAY there can be that many in there!’ Thanks for inspiring me and my students every day!
P.S. I have a student who really would like you to see the estimystery he created in Google Slides. Is there any way I can share that with you? Thanks!
I really appreciate this, Jane. Thank you for sharing all of this. Probably the easiest way to share it is to email me a link at firstname.lastname@example.org
Good morning Steve, we have been using your material for a few years and this class is super excited this year to access your daily challenges. They are the highlight of the weeks and how we start our day every single morning. We seem to have lost the growing pattern linking cube dates access…we were continuing to do those harder levels on days that you posted k,1,2 work as we waited for the grade 3-8 work and friday specials. Have I missed something? They don’t seem to be in part 2…where they used to be. Can you help us out? We love starting our day with ‘Mathematician Steve’.
I’m so grateful for your resources! Thank you for creating them! I have been using Splat! and Esti-Mysteries as a warm up with my students and they really enjoy them. It’s made teaching digitally just a little bit easier to have these to rely on!
I have one comment/question about the presentation titled SPLAT-14.1-Instant-Multiple-Fraction-Splats. Slide 6 has a total of 9, and 4 splats. Two thirds are shown uncovered. My class arrived at what I think would be the correct number under each splat with that scenario — 2 and 1/12 under each splat. But calculating that was a little out of the wheelhouse of my 4th grade math students, and a little out of character with the rest of the slides, which usually don’t require creating equivalent fractions. The amount you show under each splat is 2 and 1/3. So I wonder if you meant for the total on that slide to be 10? Thanks again!
Hi, Amy. That’s a great catch! Please let your students know that I made a mistake with the number in the corner and that I am very impressed that they found it. I’m also impressed with how they solved it as is – which was a much more difficult question than I intended. Thank you!
I am writing a grant with some other teachers in my school to have a Day of Learning in which we invite outside speakers/specialists to engage with our students. We might be inviting people who are leaders in the fields of art, music, government, technology, etc. Each teacher who is involved in the grant has been tasked with reaching out to professionals in their field.
I was wondering if you do any presentations for students? I was thinking about problem-solving, creative thinking, passion searches and I thought about the times I have seen you present to teachers. Our students are in grades 4 – 6, we are a suburban district in central New Jersey.
We are hosting this “Day of Learning” (which will be coined differently once we finalize the grant) all virtual so there is no travel involved. We would ask presenters to present the same presentation twice (for 2 different sets of kids) and each presentation would be about 45-60 minutes.
Is this something you would consider? and If so, can you email me? Thank you in advance.
Hi, Jessica. Sometimes I can work out remote student presentations, and it’s really fun! We would just have to book it quite a ways out – possibly 2 months or so.
Thank you so much for all of the wonderful resources. I have a question about the Google Slides compatible Splat series. Is there a trick to get the animation to work?
Hi, Jeni. To make the splats work with google slides, be sure to download the PPT, then save it to google drive, then open the file in google drive with slides. Once you’ve opened it as a slides file it will play correctly.
I would love to purchase some of your books. Week by week math Review and 25 Common Core Math Lessons for grade 6. I am struggling to find copies that I can buy in Canada. The US Scholastic does not ship to Canada and the Canadian Scholastic does not carry these books. Is there a place where I can purchase these resources with ease?
P.S. I love your splats and Estimation clips!! Especially the fraction splat. I’ve had students struggle and become successful because of these activities as starters for our math class. Thank you for all the cool resources!!
I just wanted to thank you so much for your amazing Esti-mysteries! My 2nd graders LOVE them. The other day I told them they can have some “free choice” math and they asked if we could do “estimating” instead. They literally CHEER when I tell them we are doing them. Thanks so much for helping us get through this strange year!
I just want to thank you for all that you do for teachers and students! My third grade students absolutely LOVE Esti-Mysteries, Estimation Clipboard, Splat and Cube Conversations. I have been using your materials for quite awhile now, since watching one of your webinars on the Build Math Minds Virtual Summit a couple of years ago. I have also shared your materials with colleagues.
So many great conversations happen with my students when we are using your resources. Your activities engage kids and get them excited about learning math! Thank you for providing all of these resources to teachers, and thank you for creating new materials each week for this challenging school year. Your generosity is greatly appreciated!
Also, I am a fellow Oregonian! I teach in Bend.
Thanks again for all that you do! Wishing you and your family a wonderful, restful winter break.
Hi, Beth! It’s great to make this connection! I’m so happy to hear about the enthusiasm in your classroom. It is my pleasure to share these materials, especially when I know they are promoting math joy. Have a wonderful break!
Just so you know, your resources have been amazing for my 3rd graders and my 5th graders…I haven’t yet tried them on my 7th Honors Algebra students (although they did love Esti-Mysteries two years ago!) but I will. I wonder if there’s a way to use Splat! to factor a quadratic… ☺
I have an almost-5-year-old (in pre-school) and a 6-year-old (in kindergarten). I did a couple of the K-1-2 level Esti-mysteries with them, and they LOVED them and begged me for more. I also did a couple of splats and the first melting cubes, which was a great way for me to see their thinking. Not gonna lie, they still prefer Esti-Mysteries! My younger daughter told me at bedtime the other night, “I love you a drop more than I love Daddy, because you do the Esti-Mysteries with us and he doesn’t.”
Thank you again for the time and effort you devote to building number sense for the next generation!
What a great story, Marnie! Thank you for sharing all of this with me. I’m grateful for the comment – and you are certainly welcome. Please let your family know that I am delighted to hear how much they love Esti-Mysteries!
First of all, THANK YOU! I love your website and all your creative and awesome resources!
I am having a hard time this year accessing your clipboards. I’m working on a chromebook, and I know in your resource it says we are able to open them in Google Slides, but I am just not getting there. My chromebook is not capable of opening up a powerpoint, and therefore I cannot access the material.
Any support or advice would be greatly appreciated, thank you!
Hi, Amy. Can you download the clipboards onto another computer and then save them from that computer to your google drive? If so – or if you already have the in a google drive – then open drive on your chromebook and the right click the file. From there, choose open with and select google slides. Then it will run a slides version for you. I hope that helps!
Hi! We love using your esti mysteries! My students love them and ask to complete them on a regular basis. I purchased the creator course last year and have been enjoying making them as well. My students really prefer having the chart imbedded in the esti mystery and when we are remote learning, it makes everything much easier. Is there a way for me to imbed them myself into the slides that I have from the creator course?
Hi, Rina. Thank you for purchasing the course. I think the easiest way to do it would be to copy the chart off of one of the recent Esti-Mysteries that I’ve downloaded and then paste it on top of the picture that you use. I’ve found that I need to move the picture around a little bit to make it fit, but when I do that I can make it work. Please feel free to just copy it and paste it onto the ones you create.
Would Microsoft Stream work? We have open access to that platform.
I don’t know anything about Microsoft Stream. I’ll run a quick google search, but it’s not one I’m familiar with.
I am wondering if you have had a chance to look into using Microsoft Stream. I am sure you are crazy busy, so please know I appreciate your time and all you do for math instruction. Thank you!
Hi, Chris. Thanks for coming back to this. I checked out Stream and finally came to the conclusion that it would just take me too long to upload the 150 videos and add in all the metadata. It’s possible that it could be done over summer, but right now I’m trying to eke out enough time to get a new resource posted each evening and hopefully 1 new video per week. I wish I could make it happen, but it’s just out of reach right now. I understand that some districts block YouTube, and I wish I could be more helpful.
I am a math coach in Omaha, Nebraska and we love your resources. We recommend them to teachers all the time. We are currently very excited about your multiplication course and would like to recommend it to teachers, BUT we have a youtube block on our district internet filters for student accounts. Have you considered housing them anywhere else or do you have a work around for this?
Hi, Chris. I’m certainly open to putting them in an additional location. I’m not sure my blog would work, though. Do you have some other ideas of what might be a good fit?
Good morning, Mr. Wyborney!
I am a Title 1 Math Coach in Northern Virginia. I am supporting Kindergarten teaches and students. We’re wondering if you’ve considered creating a Coin SPLAT to help with identifying coins and their values.
Thank you so much! Happy Holidays!
Hi, Cindy. I haven’t done that yet, but it’s a great idea. I have a thought on how to make it happen. If you download a splat from my blog, you should be able to type numbers into the circles to add values to them. I’m envisioning 5 cents, 10 cents, etc. If you adjust the total to match, it might create the kind of question you are looking for. I’d love to hear your thoughts.
I am having issues opening up your resources on my Chromebook. Do you have any suggestions? I would like to use the resources when I work with students on Google Meet.
Hi, Annie. I’ve recently heard of problems trying to download files to chromebooks. My suggestion is to download them to another computer, save them into your google drive, and then open the files from google drive on your chromebook. I think that is the most solid pathway that will continue working even if there are further chromebook updates.
Thank you so much for making all of these wonderful resources and sharing them at no cost. You have no idea how much it is appreciated. My students ask for Splat, Esti-Mysteries ,and everything else you provide. I am new to a school in Beaufort, SC and am sharing your resources. You have really added to our math time. Thanks again. You are a blessing to me and many others.
Hi, Michelle. I truly appreciate this, and you are certainly welcome. I will keep the resources coming. I’m so happy to hear that they are a helpful addition to your math time. Much more to come! I’m grateful for the comment!
I’m a educational consultant in Quebec, Canada, and I love your work. I would love to translate some of your Esti-mysteries in french for the student from grade K-6. All of your references would be there. Would it be okay with you? It’s a great work and I would love to share it with the teachers I work with. Thank you! Caroline Chauvin, Gatineau, Quebec
Hi, Caroline. Yes – absolutely. I would be honored if you would make this more widely available to more students and educators. Thank you for keeping all of the references on there.
Charts for the older grades, like the kinder charts, would be great for distance learning. Thank you for all your work! I don’t know where you find the time to create such wonderful things. Thank you.
Hi, Robin. Some day I’ll tell the story of how I have so much time. Part of it has to do with very, very early on Saturday mornings. 🙂 Thanks for the feedback on the charts. I see there is quite a response to this. Stay tuned!
I’m new to your site and to teaching grade 2 and teaching online (I’ve been a 5/6 teacher for 10 years). I see the estimysteries and love the idea as well as the splat but would like to read a blog or listen to sort of an overview of them so I know what I’m doing and not rushing off all half cocked as usual. do you have an overview or something somewhere on this site? or a podcast?
Hi, Carissa. I don’t currently have a video overview of them, but I can certainly make one and put it on my YouTube channel. This is a great question!
I am constantly amazed with your resources and open heartedness to share them. I took your estimation slides class and appreciate you sharing your process. I don’t think you will ever know how much children LOVE your work and how it turns them onto math. In a time when so many are using teachers pay teachers, I really appreciate the high quality work you share at no charge! It is AMAZING! I am forever grateful to you!
I really appreciate that you let me know this, Carrie! It’s great to hear of the students love for these resources. I’ll keep the materials coming.
My 5/6 class enjoys your Esti-mysteries. They are wondering if you take actual photographs of the correct amounts or if the clues lead us to a made-up amount (we mean, do you actually count the amounts in the containers before designing the mystery). Thank you for responding to this inquiry. Keep up the great work!
Hi, Erin. Yes, I triple count everything and write the total in the photo. But I crop out the note that has the amount right before I post it, so it won’t give away the answer. 🙂
Hi Steve – Discovered your multiplication course on Youtube. Love it! Plan to use with “at risk” middle school classes with the goal of being ready for EOC Algebra I. I believe multiplication and fraction skills are two key skills needed. I plan to integrate with Edpuzzle videos so that students have a place to record their responses. Will let you know how it goes 🙂 Thanks for all that you share.
Thanks, Joanne! I can’t wait to hear how it goes on EdPuzzle. I think that the “Visual Question Mix” and “Structurally Speaking” lessons found in chapters 2-12 would be a very good match for EdPuzzle.
I teach 5th, and have started using Esti-mysteries and my students love it. I feel they are in need in the multiplication course. I am wondering how that went, or how it is going for you? Did you do 1 a day? I have also discovered ED puzzle this year. I like your idea. 🙂
I am a huge fan of the Esti-Mysteries. I use them with teachers and students at my elementary school. When Covid School Closures began, I started meeting daily with my grandchildren…Esti-Mysteries are our favorite! They even have shared them with their friends! Lately, we make them for our weekly virtual family dinners and share them as a family!
I’m so happy to hear that they are a part of keeping families connected! Thank you SO MUCH for sharing this with me!
I am a rabid fan of yours! I was an instructional coach and went back into the classroom. I always told my students “I have something new from Mr. Wyborney!” They always cheered. You were a member of our room…..and I loved the math talk that happened from SPLAT! to estimysteries, the interactive multiplication, and the number board mysteries, dot patterns, everything….If I prefaced it with “another gift from Mr. Wyborney,” my students bought in. So thank you…
Now my question: With the adjustments and changes to our teaching due to Covid-19, I have started using PearDeck, an “add on” for Google slides. I have had to modify your slides by going through the slide show using power point on one screen, they using the snipping tool to make a separate slide for each part of the magic we were working on…usually Splat! I also used it for esti-mysteries.
Pear Deck offers a badge, but we must send a sample deck to them as a “published” deck.
May I have permission to share your work as part of my PearDeck, or will you need me to send you a link and share a sample with you first?
Hi Steve, I have used your Splat activities in class and during distance learning and the kids love them! I am now going to be teaching a French Summer Learning Program online and wonder if I could translate some of the words on your Esti-Mystery clue pages so my students can read the clues and engage in math and literacy at the same time.
Your activities have been life-savers during learning from home time. The students love them and are learning and growing as mathematicians. Thank you so much.
Best comment so far: I was playing Splat on Zoom and a 6 year old student said, “Hold on! This is so hard, it’s making me have to use the bathroom. I’ll be right back!” That gave me a giggle and I hope it brightens your day, too.
That’s truly the first time I’ve heard that one! Thank you for the comment!
I am a grade 1 teacher. You have excellent resources. I particularly like the Splat. With my students doing distant learning right now I have been assigning Boom Cards to them. I was wondering what the Copyright is for creating your Splats in Boom Cards and sharing them? I don’t create much so I don’t want to break copyright.
I could make the Splat in moveable so student could check their answer after, or lock it for evaluation purposes.
I can show you and example if you want to see it.
I’m not familiar with Boom Cards, but would love to learn more.
Steve I have really appreciated you sharing your talents. During this crazy COVID I have been using some of your slides to help my students with estimation. I have created a few into Google Forms (for my class only). I would love to share them with you. Let me know how.
Hello I am a grade 1 teacher. I think your Splat activities are awesome! Lately I have been using Boom cards a lot (especially with all this distance learning). I would like to make the Splat on the Boom card format but am not sure if I would be breaking copyright?
Hello, I am doing your Esti Mystery Block Talk Level 2 for my 3rd graders and I think there is an error on it. Clue#1 says, ” The answer is an odd number that is less than 60. You can cross of 1,3,5,7 …..”. You don’t want to cross off the odd numbers if the answer is an odd number or am I reading that incorrectly?
Please let me know if this will be corrected so I can redo it for my digital lesson next week. Or maybe it has already been corrected and my curriculum people didn’t tell us.
Thank you for this catch. The updated version is on my blog now. Thanks!
I just wanted to thank you so much for putting these together, and for making them in such a respectful way. It seems like you expect the kids to think, but also provide the supports they need to do so.
These have been great in my classroom, and great as part of our teaching from home. The kids literally cheer when the answer is revealed, and that’s something that the parents haven’t gotten to experience before now.
I also have to say that, as I’ve attempted to edit some of them a bit so they render properly in Google Slides, I have gained a HUGE appreciation for how much work each one takes. Wow.
We are immensely grateful.
First of all, thanks a million for providing such a rich bounty of clever, well-thought-out activities.
Wondering if you have any Estimysteries that deal with liquid volume in metric units.
Thanks a million…
I don’t have any that deal with liquid volume in metric units. I love the idea, though so may see if I can get to it this summer.
I am a teacher in New Brunswick (Canada), as you know, the world of teaching is looking very different thanks to Corona virus. I absolutely love your content; however, I teach in a French school. I have translated your activities so I can use them in my classroom, but I am hoping I can send them to my students because they absolutely LOVE them (especially SPLAT and Cube conversations). Thank you for what you do and I look forward to hearing from you!
Hi Dominique and Steve. I also teach in Frencha nd have been translating PowerPoints for my students. Maybe we could share or Steve could create a section of French resources from our work. I so appreciate that Steve offers his work for free and would be more than happy to share mine back.
I was wondering if I could find a transcript for The Multiplication Course videos on You-Tube. I intend to show the videos with the sound off and narrate in French as we go. I probably won’t bother to re-record but that could be arranged if you would find it helpful!
Just wanted to share that I’ve created youtube videos using your esti-mysteries. I am giving you credit at the end of my videos. Thank you for all of these phenomenal resources!
We are a third grade class who loves your SPLAT activities (and esti-mysteries). We noticed that one of your SPLATs-the 12.1 Instant Fraction SPLAT has a mistake. On screen 5, the total says 6, but the amount outside and underneath the SPLAT only shows 5. Thanks for making learning so fun for us!
Mrs. Hicks 3rd grade class
Venice Elementary School
I am so very grateful for this catch! I will try to update this soon. Wishing you a wonderful week from here in Oregon!
Hello Steve! Our 5th grade math class was playing your Splat fraction game. We noticed that on slide 5 of 12.1 there is an error. The slide should have said 5, instead of 6 total. Thank you for your hard work in creating Splat!
-Mrs. Kyler’s math class
Great catch! I’m grateful for this note, and I’ll try to get it updated this next weekend! Thank you for reaching out and letting me know!
I translated the Fraction Splat into french. Do you allow me to make them available on my website ?
Have a good day
Could you send me a copy to take a look at?
I am so grateful that you generously provide these resources for teachers and students. You should hear my fourth graders respond to my saying, “Get your journals ready for a new Esti-Mystery!”
The Splat series is so simple and powerful, it reaches all of my learners and particularly the ones who have developed a distaste of math. Your influence on students -you’ll never likely meet- is truly great. Thank you and please keep it coming.
Steve, Thank you so much for your estimation clipboards. I have been using them in a second grade class. Interesting to watch students make connections between the different quantities to make guesses. As a teachers we get some much information from each session we do. It also shows what students struggle to make reasonable estimations. These have been a great routine for the students and to develop a good co-teaching relationship. Thanks so much.
I just have to say I am Steve Wyborney groupie! lol! We use your site every single day in my 5th grade math classroom and I APPRECIATE YOU! Thank you for sharing your work for free! My students LOVE Esti-Mysteries and beg for them daily! I just wanted to drop a note to say THANK YOU!
Hi! We have teachers that are translating your slides into Spanish. Let me know if you would like these resources to post on your website.
Hi, Nicole. I would LOVE to have a copy of the splats translated into Spanish. Even a few sample copies would be helpful for me to take a look at. Thank you!
We teach in a dual-immersion school and would love to have the slides that have been translated to Spanish. It would be a great resource to all our teachers.
I teach 4th grade in Hamilton, Montana. I listened to your session at the Build Math Minds summit this past summer. It completely changed my math procedures. My class absolutely loves Splat, Esti-mysteries, Subitizing, the Clipboard, Cube Converstaions…and everything that you do!!! Who knew that building number sense could be so much fun? My kids love to create their own Esit-mysteries in small groups and challenge other groups. It is awesome.
The reason I am writing is because my students believe that they found an error in Splat 11.4 (fractions). One of the slides claims to have 7; they have counted it more than once and believe that it has 7 1/3 (last group). They insisted that I email you to make the correction. They know that it was clearly an oversight.
Thanks for making number sense so fantastic. My kid love number sense time.
Thank you for reaching out with this note, Kathy. I’m catching up on comments and can tell that your students are correct. Thank you for catching that error and for sending in my way. It looks like I have some work to do. Somehow the splats with the errors generate the most fascinating conversation, and I really appreciate the note. Tell them I am impressed and to keep up the great work!
Dear Mr. Steve, My first graders love doing your Esti-Mysteries. However today we did your newest called Unleaded Level 1. Clue number 5 said the answer did not include the digit zero. However the reveal said the answer was 30!! We are confused.
From Mrs. Nutt’s class
Thanks, Laura. I know I followed up by email, but just in case anyone else has the same question about Unleaded Level 1, clue #5 looks a little different than the clues before it, so I recommend paying careful attention to the part that is underlined. Thanks!
I am attending a district Math meeting, and I would love to play your video about Impostor Numbers. I use this activity in my own classroom at the Alg 3 level and it stimulates discussion and thought among the teen aged students. Would it be okay if I used it?
Thank you in advance.
Yes, feel free to share the video and any other resources on the blog.
I am wondering how the answer for Esti-Mystery #9 (cup upside down) can’t be 33?
The Esti-Mysteries always narrow down to a small set of answer choices, and one of those is the actual number in the container. That leads to a rich final discussion, and then the actual number of objects (which is one of the 2 or 3 remaining mathematical possibilities) is revealed.
Are you going to be presenting or having any professional development workshops in the New Hampshire or Northeast area?
I’ll be at the Rhode Island conference on Pi Day this coming March.
Hi Steve, I just attended your session at NCTM SLC – outstanding! I was wondering if you could post/send me any of the examples of Splat! Walls (bulletin boards) you showed during your presentation – we would love to create our own at our school.
Just discovered you. You are a gem. LOVE, Love, Love what you’ve created. You’re brilliant.
My sixth graders had a blast with your mystery mirror. Have been browsing some of your other topics.
I think Fraction Splat Series Lesson 14.1 slide 6 number 9 is incorrect.
It equals 10.
Thanks for the note, Michele! Yes, I made a mistake on a couple of the fraction splats and students have very much enjoyed finding them. I try to correct all of the files as soon as possible and make sure the newest downloadable versions are correct. It’s amazing how much conversation a mistake can generate.
Hi Steve, Love all that you do. I was able to make my own Esti-Mystery after taking your course and it was a big success. You helped me with some glitches I had and I so-o-o appreciated that. We start every math class in my multi-age first/second grade with one of your resources. The only one I don’t do is the Maze Hundreds Chart. I would love to use that too but we have changed over to the bottoms up100s chart after reading Jennifer M.Bay-Williams and Graham Fletcher’s article-November/December 2017 • teaching children mathematics | Vol. 24, No. 3. I am guessing you have seen this before. It would be fabulous if you could make an bottoms up Maze Hundreds chart as an option? Again-thank you! You have changed how I see math and have improved my own students’ math sense.
Hi, Sally! Thanks for taking the course and for sending this comment. You can see that I’m just now catching up on all of the comments. I’m considering uploading an updated bottoms-up hundreds chart. I’ve been asked about it enough now that I think I need to move that blog post up quite a ways in the production calendar. I’m so happy that you have been creating Esti-Mysteries!
Thank you for sharing your genius and passion for math with educators! We love your puzzles! I am wondering if you have ever talked with or seen Dr. Gordon Hamilton’s math puzzles on Math Pickle? I think you two would have a lot to talk about! Perhaps collaborate?
Would you please send me the answers to the cube conversations? My class is loving the 20 Days of Number Sense! Thank you!!
Here they are. https://stevewyborney.com/2018/02/80-printable-cube-conversations-pages-and-4-instructional-strategies/
I have just come across your blog and particularly like the Maths talk / 20 days of Number Sense. My students love number talk time. You mention that each day contains multiple levels, and that teachers can have access to other grade levels. Could you please direct me to where / how I can access the different levels right up to high school. Thank you
Hi, Karen. Each day of the series has different levels within it. I used different ranges of grade bands in days 1-5, 6-10, 11-15, and 16-20. When you look at the files you’ll see how I’ve broken them apart. Let me know if you need additional information.
I’m wondering if there is a way to convert your powerpoints to google slides? One of the districts that I work with really wants to use the 100 maze but their computers do not have PP. Thank you for any help you can provide.
Hi, Amanda. Yes, you can quickly and easily convert them to google slides. Simpyly save the PPT file in your google drive. Then “open with” google slides and it will instantly make a create a google slides version of the file and open it right up. Be sure to click on present and the experience will begin.
Hi Steve –
My students in every grade love your esti-mysteries. I’m having a difficult time seeing where you are posting them. I read on twitter that you’re posting 30 new ones but I can’t find the list of old ones! The only ones I can find are the first 10 you ever created. My hope is to download them all and share with teachers so they are ready to use. Any suggestions?
Hi,Kathy. I’ve just begun posting them in 51 Esti-Mysteries. I’ll keep adding to them as I go until all 51 are posted. https://stevewyborney.com/2019/09/51-esti-mysteries/
Your resources are incredible. I really appreciate that you share them! This summer I saw Graham Fletcher (as well as you–thanks for the 20 days of number sense!) on the virtual Build Math Minds Summit. I love the idea of a bottom up hundreds chart and I like using the one on your site. Have you considered making one that goes bottom up as well?
Thanks for all you do to help improve mathematics instruction!
Hi, Steve! I am interested in buying your book, 25 Common Core Math Lessons for the Interactive Whiteboard: Grade 5; however, I do not have a CD drive in my computer. If I buy the book, is there a way for you to share the digital files with me via a download?
So I have tried to download things from your website (splat slides, etc.) . However, when I go to open them up my Mac can’t read them correctly or should I say the Keynote feature doesn’t read them correctly and I can’t make use of all the features. For example, with the Estimations I have found a way to read all the clues, but I can’t get the reveal to work. I remember hearing you mention in the webinar you did for the Virtual Math Summit that you have made some of your slides available on Google slides, but I can’t seem to access that either. I would really love to use these resources in my room. I was wondering if you might have a solution to my problem. (As you might guess I am not particularly computer savvy). Thank you for your time.
3rd grade teacher
Hi, Karen. Thanks for the question and the nice comments. I think there might be a pretty simple solution. Usually, when the reveal isn’t working it’s because the slideshow isn’t playing (i.e. slide show -> view show in PowerPoint, or Present in Google Slides). I can’t think of the term in keynote at the moment, but if you make sure the show is playing I think the reveal will work for you as you are expecting. Can you try it out and let me know?
Hi Steve, what can I say? The students in my year 5 class love the e-mystery challenges so much that they are starting to produce them themselves and are taking ownership of Mathematics, directing the thinking towards areas that they want to explore. I have had more participation in class and better results from the discussions that follow.
Keep up the great work.
Jon, this is music to my ears! I love hearing that students are creating their own Esti-Mysteries. That is a really powerful process. A great challenge is to see if they can narrow it down to 2 reasonable choices using only 4 or 5 clues. I’m so happy to hear that they are diving in.
I am a volunteer in a 5th grade classroom and I participated in the Virtual Math Summit at BuildMathMinds a week ago. Your presentation on your 20 Days of Number Sense project was one of my favorite sessions. I am hoping that I can interest the teacher I work with in your work. I am wondering whether you have any publicly available presentations similar to the one you used at the VMS that I could share with this teacher. You did such a superb job of introducing the routines, I would prefer to have him hear your words rather than my summary.
Hi, Ross. I know that Christina Tondevold has it within the Build Math Minds site. Perhaps I should add a recording to my blog.
I didn’t work directly with you in Ontario, but I worked at the middle school and Almeda teaching 6th grade. Just wanted to let you know that I was excited to see a presenter today from New Mexico reference your Fraction Splat at our professional development in Adelanto, CA where I teach now. As always, your ideas and strategies are phenomenal.
Thank you so much!
I am hoping to share how I’ve used your resources at our Alabama Council for Teachers of Mathematics Fall Forum. Do I need special permission from you to share your resources with other teachers?
I’m wondering if there is a way to convert your powerpoints to google slides?
Our district has completely changed over to Chrome and GAFE and I can’t open your interactive powerpoint.
Thank you for your guidance,
I appreciate your work and resources. I’m excited to try Splat with my struggling 7th grade students. I’m wondering what grade levels you recommend for your resources. I also wonder how your activities connect with grade level standards, specifically 7th grade math. I imagine I can use them to lead students to uncover many of our standards, but I’m having trouble making the connections.
If I understand this scenario correctly, you may want to begin with lesson 3.1 and work form there. Truly the standards that can be addressed with each Splat! lesson are numerous. I’ve used the same slide in grade 4 as I’ve used in a high school classroom. When you use multiple splats, some students will approach it through addition, subtraction, multiplication, comparisons, or a wide range of other strategies – while others may see it as an algebraic expression. It may be useful to you to think about how the images can be expressed as equations.
Your work is fabulous. I am an early childhood math educator and researcher at Bowling Green State University (Ohio). I was able to modify your Splat template to create some preschool friendly Splat slides. I would love to share these with you and possibly work to create more. Let me know if you are interested.
Just love, love, love your stuff. Thank you so much for all that you are providing for teachers so that there can be more math dialogue in our classes. I have a question for you…..I have used the Maze Hundreds Chart in my classes. Having the black tiles and background was very difficult for the students to see the blue tile square outline on the smartboard. I was able to change the background to a lighter colour and this helped a bit. I was wondering if you can let me know how to change (or make thicker) the colour of the square outlines so that they are easily discernible on the smartboard. Again. Thanks so much
You can select the entire area on the slide and then right click to bring up options. From there choose a thicker line width. You may want to dabble with it a bit to find the one that you like best.
I purchased Math Review6 through Scholastic. I am excited about using it, however, would like to increase student participation. Any chance that your slides could be converted to Google slides?
There is an amazing addon “Pear Deck” that has the flexibility to insert slides into a presentation for students to respond to using any device.
Have you considered using google?
Hi, Patti. Great question. Thank you for purchasing the book. I’ll follow up with an email.
I love your work! Your Maze 100 chart is amazing. Would you ever consider making a 120 chart to cross over the century mark? I know my first grade teachers would love that as they work with 120 charts more than 100 charts.
Thanks for considering!
“The answer I got for Riddle 1 was 60 robots after 10 duplication events.”
Hi, Steve. My fifth grade class is a huge fan. We are working on Duplication Station. Is there a spot where you are collecting responses?
Great question! I just posted an option to download the answer. I wanted to keep the riddle separate from the answer so that I wouldn’t reveal it too soon.
Hi there. Quick question re: Splat! Is it ok if I do the work to translate them to Google platform? Your work is so helpful in fostering math discussions, but my district uses Chromebooks and the Powerpoint Presentations lose their animations. I have to add them back in during the translation and wanted your permission to do that. I’m creating a HyperDoc to gather them all in one place. Obviously, you would be given all credit and a link to your blog if you want. I’m doing the work, so please let me know!
Dr. Kathleen Kelly
Elementary Enrichment Specialist
I’m hoping my email reached you letting you know that I’m excited about this project. In the email I have a few suggestions about how I think this could be done the most easily. If it doesn’t reach you for some reason, please contact me again here. Thanks!
I put in my email address and it don’t work can you tell me how to get on it a different way
It may have been filtered into another email box – like your junk mail box. Check that to see if it showed up there. If not, let me know, and I’m happy to help find another way to get them to you.
I was also wondering about using the Splat files on the Google platform and saving them to my school’s Google Drive. Please let me know if this is ok. Thanks.
Great work with this awesome resource that gets kids engaged.
Hi, Trenity. There is an animation in PPT that doesn’t work on Google Slides. I’ve written some additional splat slides that will work on google slides but haven’t yet posted them. I’d like to have a larger set ready before I turn them loose.
I write to tell you about a success we have had with your Splats! Here is what a teacher told me today…
“This is really great! We just tried Splat in second grade. It was the first time a. Oy from China participated and everyone started cheering!!”
Thank you for your intellect and generous spirit. I will order your book this weekend. If there is any other way I can support what you do, please let me know!
Dr. Kathleen Kelly
Baylis Elementary School
Email was misspelled on form.
Did you receive the email from me?
Thank you, Kathleen!
Just a quick note to thank you for your SPLAT series! My second graders LOVE them! It is amazing how all their little hands raise quickly to answer, how focused they are. They asked me today, who made this game? and I told them that a very intelligent mathematician did. Be proud that you are making talk even the shyest one of them, even the ones who are learning to speak English.
SPLAT is marvelous. If you have not already done so, do work to make this an Apple or Android app and gamify it – and earn a bit for yourself too.
I’m currently working with adults, but am forwarding this to all my teacher friends and parents of young children.
I taught my son coordinate geometry as a 3 year old using a 4×4 crazy quilt and a version of I Spy. He’s now a CTO for a tech company. Perhaps you can do something with that idea – you are so creative!
I wish you every success!
I like your program…lends itself extremely well to number sense math talks in the classroom.
I have found a mistake/error in your presentation video @ 5:20 in to the video…2 splats of equal value plus 3 does not equal 10. You follow up with 2s+3=10. Under each splat is a value of 4, which will NOT equal to 10.
Just felt you needed to have that brought to your attention, otherwise I think you have come up with a great resource to use in the classroom.
Thanks, Craig! Nice catch. At some point I may go back to record the video again, although it has sparked my to wonder if a set of videos with “errors to find” might be interesting to build.
You should speak at the California Math Conference South. I am a speaker who presents on CGI and growth mindset. I teach first grade, and my students have benefited from your blog.
Hi, Gordon! I would love to speak at CMC South. I often travel and speak. Normally, it’s just a matter of scheduling.
I am desperately trying to track down a link to either he video or just the image from a video I came across either via you or at NCTM a few springs ago. My district swapped out my laptop and didn’t save my bookmarks or files. The graphic I remember is the pictorial representation of numbers 1-30 in colorded circles and sections that lead to a great what do you notice discussion in class…kids finally see it represents prime and composite numbers and factors etc. does this ring any bells with you?
Hi, Ruth. I’m hoping my email reached you. If not, send me another note here.
I know what illustration you are talking about. I came across it in a Ted Talk about Math Instruction by Dan Finkel. Here is the link:
It is a wonderful representation!
Good morning, Ruth. You probably found it already, but it is called “Prime Climb”. I, too, was profoundly moved when I saw it.
created by Stephen Von Worley
This is now available on Youcubed.org under the week of inspirational math.
If I have access to 25 lap tops, then how do I use your interactive Maze 100 chart?
Let me brainstorm. You could ask students to reveal a set of numbers with a given sum. You could have students create patterns for one another. I think you may find more interaction if you use one laptop for every two students so that you can promote discourse. You could create lists of numbers and have students create the matching visual pattern. You could ask students to anticipate what type of pattern may be produced from a number set. Let me give you an example. What do you think this shape would look like: 23, 24, 25, 34, 14? Here is another challenge for you… Can you visualize 14, 25, 36? I think there are many, many possibilities waiting to be discovered, but I would recommend keeping the learning social, interactive, centered on number sense, and would keep discourse within reach as often as possible.
You had an inspiring presentation in Portland at in March. You discussed teaching facts by introducing the hundreds chart at an all school beginning of year assembly. I would like to present this idea to my principal but am having difficulties finding any resources on your site. I wish there was a video of your full presentation. It was jam packed with amazing strategies. Thank you!
Thank you, Pat. I don’t believe anyone videotaped that presentation. I have many resources that I love to share. I seem to create them much more quickly than I am able to create instructional videos to accompany them on my blog. I’ll keep uploading as I go. The multiplication facts resources would make a really good series, and I’ve thought of creating some videos to share out. This may be the bit of encouragement I need to move that up a few places on the priority list.
I will get back to you on that. 🙂
Fyi, shared your videos again with a group of teachers before they went visiting today.
Plan on using them with administrators next week.
So thank you again!