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Mental math skills involve the ability to perform mathematical calculations in the mind, without relying on pencil and paper. Mental math skills enable students to estimate answers to calculations, and so be able to work quickly on everyday problems and judge the reasonableness of answers calculated formally.

– Focusing on the Fundamentals of Math – A Teacher’s Guide, p.2-3

## Video Selections

These curated videos have been selected to help you gain a deeper understanding of the above selection from “Focusing on the Fundamentals of Math – A Teachers Guide”.

**Using Friendly Numbers (Marion Small)(1:23)**

**Skills, Estimation, and Practice (1:13)**

**Strategies for Mental Calculation – Cathy Fosnot (2:46)**

**Facilitative Prompts**

- Prior to viewing: What comes to mind when you think about students successfully working with numbers? What knowledge and skills are important in the development of numeracy and strong sense of number?
- While viewing the video, what are some key messages regarding student thinking and demonstrations of learning or understanding of number are you hearing? What are you wondering? What questions do you have?
- After viewing: What might be some next steps involving building and sustaining concept of number in your classroom or school community? What impact might this have for your students? Why is this important?

**Proficiency (2:18)**

## Text Resources

This curated list of documents have been selected to help you gain a deeper understanding of the above selection from “Focusing on the Fundamentals of Math – A Teachers Guide”. Each link will take you directly to the relevant section within the document.

#### A Guide to Effective Instruction in Mathematics, K-6, Number Sense and Numeration Vol 1, The Big Ideas

#### A Guide to Effective Instruction in Mathematics, Gr 4-6, Patterning and Algebra

#### A Guide to Effective Instruction in Mathematics Gr. 1-3 Number Sense and Numeration

#### Paying Attention to Spatial Reasoning