Colouring by Linear Systems, The Grinch (15 and 30-Sheet Collaborative Mosaics)
Highly Engaging Holiday Fun! This task hits the intersection of collaborative motivation and individual accountability as students solve linear systems problems, both from equations and a variety of Christmas-themed application word problems. Each student's worksheet represents a small section of the large Grinch mosaic.

2 different mosaic sizes are included, to accommodate different class sizes. (15 and 30 sheet mosaics are included.)

• Each worksheet contain a randomized answer list at the bottom, allowing students to check their answers before colouring.
• All problems have (or round to) integer solutions for the two variables, although percentages, decimals or fractions may be involved in the process of solving.
• Each worksheet contains twelve problems

The first seven problems are given as two equations targeting these methods:
1) solve by graphing
2) solve by elimination
3) solve by graphing
4) solve by elimination
5) solve by substitution
6) mixed type, possibly involving fraction coefficients
7) solve by substitution

The last 5 are Christmas-themed word problems involving a variety of contexts:
• Money and Value (coin mixtures, ticket sales with different prices)
• Motion (distance, speed and time relationships)
• Mixtures (% concentration blends, candy mixtures with $/pound)
• Word Equations (sum and difference of two numbers, written equations in words)

This task lends itself perfectly to small-groups, since each worksheet is different but structurally similar. Expect to overhear some rich mathematical dialog taking place! This is a challenging assignment, but the collaborative reward will drive them to the end goal.

A HANDY SOLUTION EXEMPLAR FILE IS INCLUDED! (See the product preview for an excerpt)

Leave the picture a secret or share it for motivation… it’s your call!

INCLUDED (.pdf and .docx everything):
• Complete class sets of worksheets for the 15, and 30-sheet mosaics
• Exemplar Solutions for every type of word problem contained on students' worksheets. Post this, or use it for examples during your lesson!
• Teaching Tips page for smooth implementation of this product
• Complete answer keys for all worksheets
• Colour image of the completed mosaic with coordinates to help you assemble the finished product

All my “Colouring by…” worksheets use standard pencil-crayon colours found in the Crayola 24 pack. For best results, use the exact colour name match, and have all student use the same colouring medium. Perhaps a class set of pencil crayons would be a fun math department investment!

Thanks for checking this out! May your heart grow two sizes this year!
~CalfordMath (
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Created: Nov 9, 2016

Updated: Feb 22, 2018

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