Engagement entails much more than rote repetition of a procedure. Math worksheets tend to present very similar problem types over and over, leading to mundane practice of disassociated skills. For students who understand the material and successfully complete an assignment, another worksheet becomes meaningless. On the other hand, for the students who don't understand the material, an alternative method of instruction is what's needed. Another worksheet simply adds to the student's frustration, or worse, contributes to a belief that "I'll never understand math." A cute image or a "fill_in_the_blanks" riddle does nothing to increase engagement or learning (and let's face it, those riddles are not funny!). Instead, teachers need to increase engagement by providing students with exercises in which they discover patterns and relationships, solve problems, or think creatively about math relationships.
Step 1: Introduce the Math Skill in Real Life _ I will show my son how we use this math skill in real life. I will relate the skill to everyday. For division for example, I would preset this scenario: "You have 25 baseball cards and want to give them equally to your five best friends. How do you do it?" If I said to Cameron, "What is 25 divided by 5?", he would just give me a funny. Using a real world example motivates him to work for it.