## Wednesday, March 7, 2012

### They Amaze Me

We Idaho math teachers are very lucky.  Our state is making us take a math class, and it's probably the best thing that we've ever been forced to do.  I took it a few years ago.  I thought I was a decent math teacher.  Well, this class put me in my place.  I'm amazed now to see what my mathematicians are capable of.  I've still got a lot to learn, but I'm heading in the right direction.

For me, math journals and contextual problems that press student thinking are my favorite fruits of this class.  I ask my kids to do some heavy duty problem solving and to show it in as many ways as they can.  I started a wikispace as an educational tool for parents to see how kids are problem- solving on their own in meaningful ways.  I post the contextual problems and the kids' solutions on the wiki.  I'd love for you to see what they've been doing.  Look here to check it out.  It also explains my math journals in more detail.

Here are a few problems that we've recently worked on.  See if you can dissect their strategies.

Miss McMorrow's class started out with some stars from the lunch lady.  She gave them 10 more.  They ended up with 17 stars.  How many stars did they start with?

Miss McMorrow was lifting weights at the gym.  While working her calves, she used 45 pounds, 25 pounds, and 5 pounds.  How much weight did she lift altogether?

They amaze me!

1. Wow! I am seriously impressed with your kiddos! Love your prompts!!

Laura

1. Thanks Laura. I try to keep those math problems as much about them as possible.

2. That is awesome!
Jennifer

1. Thank you Jennifer for dropping by and leaving a comment!

3. WOW!! That is fantastic! Way to go kiddos!

Melanie

1. Thanks Melanie. They are pretty cool mathematicians.

4. This is awesome, and one reason why I love math!! Sooo many different ways to solve one problem.

Amy

1. Amy, thanks for coming by. I love all the different strategies too.

5. This is amazing!! These kids are learning higher level thinking and problem solving that will carry them far in life! Come teach in my school please!
Lori
Conversations in Literacy

1. Thank you Lori. I never enjoyed contextual problems as a student. I'm so glad my kids have no fear when it comes to solving problems like this. (I'm not sure my 24 kids will let me leave. You might just have to come teach in my school instead.) :)

6. Love it! They are such smarty pants!

1. Thanks friend. Yep, they are smarty pants.

7. I love how you post it on your wikispace!

1. Thanks Julie. Hopefully it helps the parents understand what math is all about.

8. Your samples are GREAT! By the way...Thanks so much for the lovely blogger award!

1. You're welcome Jill. Thanks for coming by!

9. I just found your blog, and I am your newest follower! My husband is from Coeur d'Alene, Idaho!!!

Michelle

Apples and ABC's

1. Michelle, thanks for coming by! I love that you found me.