It's my day to blog over at Upper Elementary Snapshots! Check out today's post all about teaching COMPARISON PROBLEMS...and how important it is to help students really dig deeply into their problem solving. I hope you get some helpful tips! Whether you call them comparison problems, tape diagrams, or strip diagrams--these problems can really helps students "make sense" of ... Read *the* Post

## Writing about math

Writing about math thinking is REALLY challenging. Students in the intermediate grades aren't used to taking their ideas and transferring them to paper when it comes to complex ideas! If you have asked students to "explain their thinking" about a solution, you may have noticed them writing things like:
"First I took the 64 and the 49 and I added them. Then I took the rest away." ... Read *the* Post

## Differentiated Problem Solving: A New Approach

I know so many of you have been looking for a way to build deep math thinking with your intermediate students--I know this because I get questions about it all the time!
You want your students to be challenged in new and interesting ways—and be easily able to differentiate so that ALL your students can benefit, right?
Here's the problem...what's challenging for some is way too ... Read *the* Post

## Area and Perimeter: Getting Students Talking about Math

Research shows that students learn best when they are collaborating and talking about math. My 25+ years in the classroom tells me that this is, indeed, true--but I'll go a step farther and make the claim that math discourse can raise the level of engagement, motivation, and excitement as well. I thought I'd share some details about some recent area and perimeter work in my classroom to see if I ... Read *the* Post

## Project Based Learning Math Tasks: The Benefits of the Challenge

So many times I am asked questions about why many students seem so disengaged in math. I ask these teachers to flip through their resources and see how many of them truly help students see the real life application of math--and solve rigorous, engaging problems that students can relate to. PBL (project based learning) can help make the connections between the math skills and the real world, and ... Read *the* Post

## Math Culture–It’s more than a right answer!

"Do I have the right answer?"
One thing that I have noticed over the years as I have done more "kid watching" as I teach...is that we have most definitely conditioned our students to "fill in the blank". Whether we use workbooks, do worksheets with cute graphics, or encourage students to track their scores--we definitely convey to them that there is a "right way" to do things. Of course, in ... Read *the* Post

## How We Spend Our Math Minutes–Using Open Ended Math Tasks

Organizing Math Class Minutes
One thing that I really try to be mindful of when planning my math instruction is how I "spend" my minutes. There are some things I really try to minimize as I plan:
Transition delays
"correcting" things
passing out/collecting materials
filling out practice pages
And I try to spend as many minutes as possible doing the following:
high-level ... Read *the* Post

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