Elementary Math, Math Talk, Number Sense, Vocabulary


When I get asked the question, “What is one, quick activity I can do with my students to build number sense?” my response just about every time is Steve Wyborney’s Esti-Mystery

The Esti-Mystery activity is a FREE download from Steve’s website that is leveled to reach all of your mathematicians. You can sign up for emails from Steve as well and the Esti-Mystery arrives in your email daily. How much easier can this be? All you need is a projector from your computer, Powerpoint or Google Slides, and you are ready to go.

His schedule is as follows:

Posting Schedule


  • 3-Container Estimation Routines (All Grade Levels)  will be posted here.


  • Esti-Mystery (Kindergarten)
  • Esti-Mystery – Level 100 – (Grades 1-2)
  • Esti-Mystery – Level 300 – (Grades 3-8)


  • Esti-Mystery Level 200 – (Grades 1-3)


  • Esti-Mystery – Level 400 – (Grades 4-12)


New Videos to go with my his book, The Multiplication Advantage: Journey Into Multiplication


As a 4th grade teacher, I had students that were on all different levels. I ended up doing all 3 Esti-Mysteries on Tuesdays and then the ones on Wednesdays and Thursdays. I love how the Esti-Mysteries work on vocabulary at the same time as they work on number sense. Each Esti-Mystery takes about 5 minutes in class. You want to give students time to turn and talk with a classmate about WHY they picked that estimate.

This year Steve is changing things up and has a 3-Container Estimation routine instead of his Esti-Clipboard. I love them both and feel like you can’t go wrong.

I wanted to add a little something to the Esti-Mystery routine in my classroom and created a recording page to help students get their thinking down. The idea is for students to have the recording page in a plastic sleeve so the students can use the same paper each day of the school year.

EstiMystery Thinking Board

EstiMystery Thinking Board 100s Chart Bottom Up– NEW 11/15/22

3 Container Estimation

EstiClipboard WorkMat

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