My students really look forward to my estimation jar each month, and I hope yours will too! I have a jar that is decorated especially as our "Estimation Jar" and the students' eyes light up when I pull it out. They are eager to put their estimation skills to use, some even trying to calculate volume to try and get the closest guess. I give a prize to the top 3 guesses.
This activity is great for all ages. Use it as an "estimation station" or pass the jar around to each student. It can be used as an "I'm done, now what?" activity, or a bonus on holidays.
Included in this download is an *Editable* powerpoint of monthly (September - June) estimation slips pre-printed with ideas of what to use each month in your jar.
Tips for using an estimation jar:
Purchase items at the dollar store that can be reused from year to year. Use my suggestions, or edit to fit your own ideas!
Use packaged items that are pre-counted to your advantage.
For example, if mini-erasers come in packs of 50, I will buy as many packs as I need to fill the jar, and then remove a handful so it’s a “weird” number. Then I will count by 50s and subtract the few that I removed. This makes it so much easier to count high numbers of items!
I keep the items in a plastic zipped bag with the month and amount written down on a small note inside the bag to help keep everything organized from year to year.
Have another empty container ready for students to place their folded guesses into.