30 Ways to Use Reading Books in Math

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As a creative teacher you’re always looking for ways to maximize the tools and resources you have on hand. Books are usually a staple in your classroom and they serve as what I call Versatile Pedagogical Tools. A versatile pedagogical tool can be used across subjects and with a variety of instructional approaches. In this post we’ll focus on how to use reading books in math.  Be sure to grab the 30 Ways to Use Books in Math Resource (scroll to the bottom of the page).

Books – How many do you have?

If you are anything like me you probably have a few, okay 100+ books, on hand. If you aren’t addicted to books (and why aren’t you – c’mon now), then they are usually available in your school library. If you don’t have a large inventory of books and need a few ideas of how you can build your classroom library, then click on over to Where to Find & Buy Books for Your Classroom.

where to find and buy books

Using Reading Books in Math 

Reading is fundamental. It is the key to unlocking everything we know and everything we will know about the world. Okay, this sounds pretty deep and what does it have to do with using reading books in math?

Well, we need to provide students with more opportunities to see how one subject relates to another. To use some fancy educational language… we want to help students apply content in real-world contexts. 

To get even more academic… the Common Core State Standards outline the need and include standards for applying reading skills to better understand math, science, and social studies. One way to do this is to have students read informational texts – Click here for my post on Informational Texts. (If you are a teacher in Texas, the Texas Education Agency also recognizes the need for students to make connections between subjects. The TEKS include objectives for teaching informational texts.)

In a nutshell, you have to find ways to help students see how every subject is interconnected.

That’s all the official stuff, but as teachers we know students need to understand how knowledge and skills are used in life. The ability to make these connections helps them stay motivated and helps us with discipline and classroom management.

I doubt there is a single teacher who would argue with any of that. However, we do have questions about getting that done. Getting it done requires knowledge, planning, preparation, materials, time, and a whole lot of energy. 

30 Ways to Use Reading Books in Math

I’ve put together 30 Ways to Use Reading Books in Math to help you use what you probably already have on hand… BOOKS. 

If you teach all subjects, then you will be able to have students use any or all of the 30 Ways during any of your class periods. Students can apply the strategies while using writing, science, and social studies books.

If you only teach reading or only teach math, then these ideas will help your students start thinking about places where we use math. Several of the ideas also help your students develop their abilities to think critically.


Click for your FREE copy of 30 Ways to Use Reading Books in Math


Click for your FREE copy of 30 Ways to Use Reading Books in Math

Print, Copy, and Use 

Make copies of the 30 Ways sheets shown above.  Post one on a bulletin board or wall, place another on your resource shelf, and add one to your lesson plan folder. 

Provide copies for your students and have them practice with each of the 30 Ways. You can have your students practice independently, with partners, or in groups. I love having students work in stations. You can set up a few or all of the stations and have students rotate around the room as they apply the 30 Ways. Just be sure to have them check-off each of the 30 Ways as they work through the stations. 


If you found this helpful, please share it with your fellow teachers and colleagues. 

Share the link via email, Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest.

Please let me know if I can clarify the information or if you have any questions. 

Thank you for your support!


Veronica Lopez,

 C. I. and Assessment Specialist


30 Ways to Use Reading Books in Math


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