Confession of an Educator (Day 11 of 25 Days of School in the Christmas Season)

Posted: December 1, 2014 in Uncategorized

I have to confess. The past few days/weeks I’ve been reflecting on my own classroom.

I talk a lot about how a mathematics classroom should look, but I don’t always practice.

In fact, I’m sort of lost on implementing.

I want to have a classroom of exploring at all times. I have had short units at times, but not very often. There is a lot of work that goes into the unit building, so I don’t seem to get many done. When I do have these units I LOVE the atmosphere of the classroom and the learning that is going on. I LOVE how I come to school energized and leave exhausted from students exploring and asking questions.

I also want to have a classroom that is self-directed and working at their own pace. I have done units like this in the past, but got a bad taste in my mouth from a few. I gave up and didn’t work through it.

I know what needs to be done, I need to stop putting it off!

These last three weeks before the end of the semester I am going to have students exploring for the unit of solving one-step equations. The 6th graders only need to know how to solve one-step equations. Now we all know many will just get upset if I make them show their work when they can find the answer just by looking at the problem. So instead of giving them several problems a day and making them “show their work”, I’m going to have them do an investigation.

I’m going to start with students looking some problems with a partner. They will give their answers out loud and we will discuss why they got those answers. As a class we are going to discuss which answers are not correct and why. We will then move into looking at a word problem. How to set it up and solve.

Then next week I will put students in groups of 2 or 3 by ability. I will give each group a word problem to solve and then make a presentation on how to solve it. During the last week students will present to their classmates how to solve their problem and what they did.

I hope it works well. This is what students need. I still have some fine tuning to do, but I know it will go great.

If you have any suggestions on any of the above, please leave a comment.

  1. Jody Maxey says:

    Sounds like a great plan! A lesson can never have too much tweeking!

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