Making Number Talks Matter

Developing Mathematical Practices and Deepening Understanding, Grades 3-10

Making Number Talks Matter is about the myriad decisions facing teachers as they make this fifteen-minute daily routine a vibrant and vital part of their mathematics instruction.

You can create a quote by adding products to your cart and selecting Quote in checkout.

This title is also available through major book retailers, including Amazon.

Shipping Details
In stock. Free ground shipping. No minimum.


Making Number Talks Matter is about the myriad decisions facing teachers as they make this fifteen-minute daily routine a vibrant and vital part of their mathematics instruction. Throughout the book, Cathy Humphreys and Ruth Parker offer practical ideas for using Number Talks to help students learn to reason numerically and build a solid foundation for the study of mathematics. This book will be an invaluable resource whether you are already using Number Talks or not; whether you are an elementary, middle school, high school, or college teacher; or even if you are a parent wanting to support your child with mathematics.

Using insight gained from many years of doing Number Talks with students of all ages, Cathy and Ruth address questions to ask during Number Talks, teacher moves that turn the thinking over to students, the mathematics behind the various strategies, and ways to overcome bumps in the road. If you've been looking for ways to transform your mathematics classroom—to bring sense-making and divergent thinking to the foreground, to bring the Standards for Mathematical Practice to life, and to bring joy back into your instruction—this book is for you.

"Mathematically powerful classrooms support students in sense making—in exploring, conjecturing, and building on ideas individually and collectively. In Making Number Talks Matter, Cathy Humphreys and Ruth Parker show how to make such exciting and productive mathematical discussions take place in your classroom. Read it, try it!"   —Alan Schoenfeld, University of California–Berkeley


eBook Available Through Major Retailers

We offer ebook editions for most of our print titles so you can access on your computer, tablet, or e-reader from several major retailers including Amazon, Barnes and Noble, OverDrive, and View the full list of retailers here. For eBook purchases of 10+ please email us for a quote. Purchases of 20+ qualify for a bulk discount.

If you previously purchased an ebook from, they will remain available in your digital library. 

Inside every number calculation are buried the seeds of algebra. This wonderful new book shows how to use Number Talks to grow those seeds and meet the challenges of the Common Core. Cathy and Ruth have given us a wise and practical book on how Number Talks can help solve some of the most pressing problems facing schools.

Phil Daro

member of the Common Core Standards writing team

About the Author(s)

Cathy Humphreys is currently a doctoral student at Stanford University, where she studies mathematics teaching and learning.

Ruth Parker is a former classroom teacher and has spent over twenty years leading professional development for math teachers in grades K-12. She is currently the CEO of the Mathematics Education Collaborative, preparing the next generation of mathematics teacher leaders for Washington state.

Table of Contents

Foreword: The Wonder of Number Talks by Jo Boaler
1. What Are Number Talks? Why Are They So Important?
2. Getting Number Talks Started
3. Guiding Principles for Enacting Number Talks in the Classroom
Prelude to Operations
4. Subtraction Across the Grades
5. Multiplication Across the Grades
6. Addition Across the Grades
7. Division Across the Grades
8. Making Sense of Fractions (and Decimals and Percent)
9. Number Talks Can Spark Investigations
10. Managing Bumps in the Road
11. Moving Forward

Product Details

Grades: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
Media: 212 pp / paperMedia: Making Number Talks Matter + Digging Deeper Bundle
Year: 2015
Item No: 0998Item No: R120
ISBN: 978-1-57110-998-9ISBN: 978NUMBER120