Day 18 (of 185) chatting about math

Day 18 (of 185) chatting about math

Deep questions and differentiated instruction. Something we like to do in school but too often in language arts than mathematics. And when we look around at schools, especially elementary, it is hard to find the people who became teachers to foster a love of numeracy. 

Even I’m guilty of being an English/History which led me into being a teacher-librarian….who only rekindled an interest in numbers as I began teaching them. 

As a student it felt like “it’s Thursday so we are probably doing even numbered questions”…..

But as a teacher it was with math that I first started down the path of descriptive feedback (no more scores for tests but rather a variety of assessments to check on long term learning over short term memorization of algorithm usage). There has always been an interest in doing numbers differently – and over a decade ago I started encouraging math review via game play – many of which can still be found in my “virtual assignments” sections: http://www.nsh.sd83.bc.ca/VirtualAssignments

Today in the staff room we had an impromptu pro-d discussion prompted by a tweet by @msmcdteaches who was using a question prompt: how many cheerios are in a box?

Looks at estimation
And volume. 
Maybe even area and perimeter. 
What about averages?
Etc…..!!
Because sometimes curiosity can be the best motivator for learning. How many cheerios vs page 185 pre-reading the new unit on volume……

And again, we are good at differentiating so many subjects….but so reluctant with math. Letting students all enter an activity at the same point (counting them) and helping them as they ask the right questions (and prompting when necessary. 

And it was so neat hearing great ideas and possible questions be shared around the table. Especially the uncomfortable questions that lead us to question why we teach what we do and how. 

Kinda fun talking maths!!

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About technolandy

Principal of Sorrento Elementary Educator pushing 'technologization' in education: blending technology and curriculum seamlessly. Advocate for better understanding of Anxiety in Education (and use of self-regulation) Piloting ePortfolios
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