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Instructor Overview

Students participate in an icebreaker activity, finding a classmate whose card contains an expression equivalent to the expression on their own card. The resulting student pairs will be partners for this unit. Students spend time exploring the digital course. They learn new symbols for multiplication and detect possible errors in evaluating numeric expressions. The class discusses and decides upon norms for math class.

Key Concepts

Students evaluate numerical expressions and identify equivalent expressions. They explore why the order of operations affects calculation results and how to use parentheses to clearly describe the order of the operations.

Goals and Learning Objectives

  • Evaluate numerical expressions.
  • Understand the reason for the order of operations and how to use parentheses in numerical expressions.
  • Use the basic features of the application.
  • Create and understand the classroom norms.
  • Use mathematical reasoning to justify an answer.


  • Print out the Expressions Icebreaker cards. Select the number of pairs of Partner 1 and Partner 2 cards needed for your class. Shuffle the cards before distributing to students.
  • Write on the board or chart paper: Find a classmate whose card has an expression that is equivalent to the expression on your card.
  • Choose a hand signal or phrase for common activities, such as putting technology away and focusing on the teacher.