Magic Squares Reading Teacher Strategy

Below is a pasted word document I typed on the magic squares strategy that can be used by reading teachers. The Word document can be downloaded at the end of the post. This is from a course I took on teaching reading and part of a strategy collection notebook that education collage reading math writingthe class compiled together. I hope to post more strategies and update this with a ‘magic squares reading teacher strategy continued’ post. Obviously, this can be applied to other subjects like foreign language and even solely mathematics. As I was an elementary education major this might have to be made a little more difficult for high school students. Although it is appropriate for a warm up activity as students are arriving for class and can be found in the textbook Reading and Learning Strategies: Middle Grades Through High School (Second Edition) by Susan Davis Lenski, Mary Ann Wham, and Jerry L. Johns. Also, on the topic of vocabulary it may be worth your while to search ‘word games’ and or ‘word power games’ online just for fun and or practice. I found some interesting sites such as that has the game Word Power. Looking at it might be possible to take a Sodoku or some other puzzle and retype it to add hints that incorporate vocabulary terms and and or concepts the class is learning. The Word document is ready for use in a classroom as a worksheet, just may have to change some of the terms and definitions.

Magic Squares


Magic squares are math puzzles that are solved by matching a term with the proper definition. The solution of the puzzles is that in the end each row, horizontally and vertically and diagonally, adds up to the ‘magic number’. The squares aid in teaching students the proper definitions for terms. These puzzles can be used for practicing and or reviewing terms from a reading chapter. Magic squares combine English and mathematics lessons, and make learning fun.


  • Help students learn definitions of words
  • Provide students an independent way of reviewing materialteaching education students reading geography
  • Helps students practice math skills
  • Helps students cognitively understand the literary material
  • Provides an opportunity for whole class to become involved


  1. Hand out worksheet to students. Explain that the solution to the puzzle is the magic number. The horizontal and vertical sides will add up to the magic number.
  2. Allow each student to work on the puzzle for five to ten minutes.
  3. Students will now compare answers with small groups of peers and reach a consensus.
  4. Instructor will post the answers of the puzzle.


Name: __________________________________ Date: _______________


Magic Square 1

Directions: Solve the magic square puzzle below by matching correct term with the correct definition and writing the number in the corresponding square. Each diagonal, vertical, and horizontal row adds up to the magic number for the magic square puzzle solution. Also, note it is possible to solve for the magic number, but still have terms and definitions matched incorrectly.


  1. Clever or practical
  2. One who buys and sells things for profit
  3. Foolish or silly
  4. Someone who lends money
  5. Excited or joyful
  6. Light two-wheeled covered carriage
  7. Gold coin of Great Britain
  8. Partner or associate
  9. Association of persons or groups united by common interests




chalkboard, education, writing, reading

Content Terms

  1. Classified
  2. Tradesman
  3. League
  4. Pawnbroker
  5. Sovereign
  6. Elated
  7. Dolt
  8. Hansom
  9. Shrewd
  10. Accomplice


Magic Square 1 Solution

A. 9  B. 2  C. 7
D. 4  E. 6  F. 8
G. 5  H. 10  I. 3

Magic Number: 18





Word Document of Post: Magic Square Reading Teacher Strategy

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