Unlock the Box! Christmas Math Activity Gr. 2-3 {Addition & Subtraction Stories}

Unlock the Box! Christmas Math Activity Gr. 2-3 {Addition & Subtraction Stories}
Unlock the Box! Christmas Math Activity Gr. 2-3 {Addition & Subtraction Stories}
Unlock the Box! Christmas Math Activity Gr. 2-3 {Addition & Subtraction Stories}
Unlock the Box! Christmas Math Activity Gr. 2-3 {Addition & Subtraction Stories}
Unlock the Box! Christmas Math Activity Gr. 2-3 {Addition & Subtraction Stories}
Unlock the Box! Christmas Math Activity Gr. 2-3 {Addition & Subtraction Stories}
Unlock the Box! Christmas Math Activity Gr. 2-3 {Addition & Subtraction Stories}
Unlock the Box! Christmas Math Activity Gr. 2-3 {Addition & Subtraction Stories}
Grade Levels
Common Core Standards
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Product Description

Unlock the Box! is an engaging math challenge for Christmas, with an addition and subtraction focus. An elf named Ingrid has locked a prize inside of a box, and students must solve her clues and find the key to unlock the box!

**You are viewing the Grade 2-3 Edition. To see the Grade 3-5 Edition, click HERE.**

In the first series of clues, students solve engaging addition and subtraction story problems about Ingrid the Elf, which will help them figure out a password. The password is then given to the teacher in order to receive the final page of clues, in which students must use addition and subtraction facts to decode a message that reveals the location of the key. Once students find the key, they’ll unlock the box and share Ingrid’s prize with the entire class!

I provide you with:

  • the note from Ingrid the Elf to set the scene
  • ideas for prizes including a collectible ribbon/bookmark (collect them all!) and a sheet of homework passes
  • paper lock, key, and straps to secure the box containing the prize (Don't worry about it being made of paper: Ingrid warns that the prize will self-destruct if anyone tries to tamper with the lock without the correct key. However, you could also use a real lock and key with a box secured with a chain.)
  • Clues with addition/subtraction story problems (about Ingrid) and clever puzzles that students must solve in order to ultimately find the location of the hidden key (*Three difficulty levels of all clues are given. See below for details.)
  • Full answer keys
  • Step-by-step, detailed instructions on how to set up the materials, including: preparing the prize box, hiding the key (two specific options provided), setting out the clues, and leading the activity.

All you provide is a box that closes (like a shoe box or storage bin).

The math focus in this activity is addition and subtraction. Three versions of the clues are provided, each at a different level of difficulty. The challenge is intended to be done in partnerships and without calculators, to practice these math skills. Below is an explanation of each difficulty level:

Version A (grade 2) is the least challenging: all addition and subtraction to be done is “within 100.” Problems may include:

  • 2-digit number +/- 2-digit number (without regrouping)
  • 2-digit number +/- 1-digit number

Version B (grade 2/3) is more challenging. Problems may include:

  • 2-digit number +/- 2-digit number (with regrouping)
  • 3-digit number +/- 1-digit number or a multiple of ten

Version C (grades 3) is the most challenging: all addition and subtraction to be done is “within 1,000.” Problems may include:

  • 2-digit number +/- 2-digit number (with regrouping)
  • 3-digit number +/- 3-digit number (with or without regrouping)

(Note to Third Grade Teachers who are comparing the Gr. 2-3 Edition with the Gr. 3-5 Edition: The main differences between the most challenging version of the 2-3 Edition and the least challenging version of the 3-5 Edition are: stories and format. In the 2-3 Edition, the math stories are shorter and simpler, and the formatting of the clues is more straightforward. The actual numbers needing to be calculated within the stories are relatively similar.)

**NOTE: This resource is NOT editable.**

Check out the full line of my Unlock the Box! activities:

  • **COMING SOON!** Unlock the Box for Halloween with Mack the Bat
  • **COMING SOON!** Unlock the Box for Thanksgiving with Tad the Turkey
  • Unlock the Box for Christmas with Ingrid the Elf
  • Unlock the Box for Winter with Chuck the Snowman
  • **COMING SOON!** Unlock the Box for Valentine's Day with Viv
  • **COMING SOON!** Unlock the Box for St. Patrick's Day with Lenny the Leprechaun
  • **COMING SOON!** Unlock the Box for the End of the Year with Carl the Crab
  • **COMING SOON!** Unlock the Box Pirates! with Penny the Pirate

**For personal and single classroom use only. If using with multiple classrooms, please purchase additional licenses at the discounted rate.**

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Visit me at my blog: The Thinker Builder, or on Facebook, or on Pinterest!

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You might also be interested in my winter literature units, like The North Pole Express.

Total Pages
20+
Answer Key
Included
Teaching Duration
1 hour
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$4.00
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