3 Act tasks

One of my favourite fun and thought-provoking maths activities, as everyone knows if you have been on my NQT course, is the world dog balloon breaking record which I will show to whoever will watch! The concept has been dreamed up by the fabulous Dan Meyer in this TED talk.

Act 1 shows the context for the enquiry and allows children to generate questions - what do they wonder? What extra information do they need? In act 2, more information is provided; children are then given the chance to speculate and calculate before the solution is revealed in act 3!

Here are some the tasks and the link to the ingenious Graham Fletcher who dreamed them up.

Here's a link to all of Graham' 3-act tasks.

Section Title

Year Group

Reception

Title

Description

On each 'ding' a new circle appears; count the sounds to work out the number of circles in the final pattern.

Year Group

Y1/Y2

Description

Oh no - the egg box is knocked to the floor: how may eggs are broken?

Year Group

Y2/3

Description

The cookie monster has found a packet of biscuits: how many does he eat? Act 2 shows how many left in the packet!

Year Group

Y4/5

Description

How many ways can Zoolander be dressed? Think systematically to find the solution!

Year Group

Y5/6

Description

It takes three people to get the gigantic Krispy Kreme box into a van: how many donuts?

My Favourite

World record Balloon Dog   - by Dan Meyer

This works every time, I mean who doesn't love a balloon popping dog?

I've tried this with Key Stage one and two and adapted it each time and its a real winner! KS2 children can examine in detail the frequency/time graph whilst the younger children love the prediction and real-life maths excitement and wonder that comes from the video.