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Math Pickle: Put your students in a pickle encouraging genuine problem solving!


What it is:  Math Pickle is a FABULOUS site for mathematics inspiration that I learned about from @davidwees Reform Symposium session.  Math Pickle features mathematics videos for students in kindergarten through twelfth grade.  The videos feature real students engaging in inspiring math problems and puzzles.  The videos often speak to unsolved math problems throughout history that students work to solve.  In the unsolved problem, students must use developmental level appropriate math to work out the problem.  Math Pickle is the brain child of Dr. Gordon Hamilton who wants to abolish elementary mathematics as a subject and push the idea that problem solving is at the very heart of mathematics. The videos featured on Math Pickle do just that, put your students in a math “pickle”.  If you think about the purpose of mathematics, this makes perfect sense.  What we really want is students who are great problem solvers and can use mathematics to help solve those problems.

How to integrate Math Pickle into the classroom: Math Pickle is the most excellent mathematics inspiration I have come across.  It approaches mathematics from the standpoint of a problem solver instead of from the standpoint of a rules follower.  Already that shift in thinking makes my brain happy.  Brilliant.  Math Pickle has problems and videos for every grade kindergarten through twelfth.

Use these videos to pump some inspiration into the way you approach and teach math or show them to your students and encourage them to continue solving the problems.  Don’t forget to film your students working through their own math pickles!

The Inspired page of Math Pickle is a must see.  Students can take a look at what mathematicians do in real life.  They can also learn about the source of Math Pickle problems.

Tips: Be sure to check out Muse, news and reviews for additional ideas, puzzles and reviews of math products, puzzles and games for the classroom.

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Math Pickle in  your classroom!

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  1. Hey Kelly,

    I’m glad you like Gord’s stuff. I know he’s trying to find opportunities to share professional development around his ideas, so I think you might be able to get him to run a workshop for your school. He has his email address at the bottom of the website above.


    ps. No, Gord isn’t paying me to suggest this. I just think we should support people doing great stuff.

    PPS. You should find a way to get the captcha below to appear before the submit button…

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