How To Use Mathematical Openers

by Dan Finkel


($54.00 for 12 months of access)

Register Now

Subject: Mathematics

Grade Levels:

  • Elementary School
  • Middle School

Start Date: Immediate access

Access for 16 weeks

3 Professional Development Hours

Timing: Self-paced with no set meeting time

1 Graduate Level Professional Development Credit Available

Topics Covered:

  • Mathematical Openers
  • Dot Talks
  • Number Talks
  • Unit Chats
  • Target Number
  • Broken Calculator
  • Fraction Talks
  • Visual Patterns
  • Math Games
  • Guess My Number
  • Pico Fermi Bagels
  • Don’t Break the Bank
  • Penny Nickel Dime
  • Warm Ups
  • Steve Wyborney
  • Splats
  • Cube Conversations
  • Esti-Mysteries

One mangrove tree will be planted

About This Workshop

Looking to encourage deeper and more robust student thinking without radical changes? This mini workshop is for you. You'll learn to use these field-tested openers to start each day, without needing to develop new materials or change your class plan. It only takes five minutes a day to make math class more energized, focused, and fun.

We'll begin by exploring why math openers are so powerful, and why so many teachers rely on them.  From there we'll talk about how to get started.  We'll discuss openers that stimulate math talk, openers that develop ownership, openers that extend thinking, and openers that get kids playing creatively with math.  Finally, we'll see how to prepare to use openers and troubleshoot them when issues arise.

The mini workshop comes with access to high quality, pre-made openers, so you won't need to spend extra time making your own. Learn how a tiny change can make a huge impact in your math class!

Dan Finkel

About the Instructor

Dan Finkel

Dan Finkel is the Founder of Math for Love, a Seattle-based organization devoted to transforming how math is taught and learned. Dan develops curriculum, leads teacher workshops, and gives talks on mathematics and education nationally and internationally. His TEDx Talk, 5 Principles of Extraordinary Math Teaching, has been viewed over a million times. His puzzles have appeared in the New York Times, the Guardian, the Hindu, and as TED-Ed riddles.

Dan’s curriculum has been used by thousands of students, and is known for its combination of rigor and play. The math games he co-created with his wife, Katherine Cook, have won over 20 awards. They include Prime Climb, the beautiful, colorful, mathematical board game, Tiny Polka Dot, the colorful math game for children, and Multiplication by Heart, a learning deck of visual flash cards. See all Dan's games at