1. Two More Fun Warm-ups Reviewing Word Problems
We have seen our 8th graders struggle with algebra problems that involve “the number of bills” and the “value of those bills”. They can write x + y = 27 if there are 27 five and 10 dollar bills altogether, but stumble over the value equation: 10x + 5y = 210 when told that the 27 bills add to a value of $210.
So we decided to try to start such distinctions earlier – 5th and 6th grade. Here are 2 Power-Point Warm-Ups that help students begin to make this journey. As always, use manipualtives (we used Cuisenaire rods and Monopoly money, but any blocks will do) and give them time.
Word Problem- Money
If you were at the CMC conference in Asilomar today, I (Kathleen) promised to post the Power Point slides from the talk “Making Sense of Word Problems”.
Feel free to use or edit as you like. (I fixed the typos!)
Long division is perhaps as difficult for a 4th or 5th grader as Calculus is for a high school senior. The multiple steps are so complex that they need to be drilled until they often lose all meaning for a child. Cute mnemonics and hours of drill might result in a procedural competency for many students (unfortunately not for all), but they do not build number sense, estimation skills, mental math or mastery in solving word problems.
We’ve all heard of the benefits of the curricular approach “CONCRETE > PICTORIAL> ABSTRACT” (C>P>A) — what does that look like in our classrooms, and what does it look like for long division?
Truth #1: Children learn best using the C>P>A approach
We’ve seen this internationally, (the highest ranking countries use it) and we’ve seen it in our own classrooms. We use it because it works.
Kathleen and Corrinne are pleased to announce the launch of their new website. You can follow us there on a day-by-day basis – a whole year’s worth of daily lesson plans.
We have currently loaded lessons through September, and promise to stay at least a month ahead of the calendar. Stay tuned!
If you use any lessons, please give us feedback — how did it go? Any problems, suggestions, or improvements?
Our website has been updated to include Distance Learning Resources for the first month or so of school. If you’re teaching online this fall, you’re welcome to use the new files. We’re working on getting more lessons online (October’s coming!) – stay tuned.
Our website has been updated through October! You’re invited to visit and download any files you can use. We’d love feedback!
We’ve also added Distance Learning Resources for each of the lessons, if you’re teaching online.