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I am in love with a better way of teaching math. The ultimate goal is no longer the end product, but it's how a child arrives there that's most important. I don't mean to dismiss the answer, right or wrong, but focusing on the strategy is so much more powerful. I am not the keeper of all math strategies, passing them out when some random math expert from a teaching manual says it's time. Instead, I am in charge of cultivating an environment where the students are inventing the strategies and teaching them to each other. My goal is to present the right problems, ask the right questions, and nudge them to think strategically to find their own solutions. I've gotten into the habit of frequently asking, "Is that the only way?" The automatic answer is a resounding, "No!" We don't celebrate answers. We celebrate the many ways that they are given the freedom to invent.
(Read here if you're interested in reading about how I promote strategic thinking in my room.)
In honor of my blog's one year anniversary, find out here what I could make for you if you're a follower and comment on any of my posts this week. Today is the last of my posts for the week. I look forward to hearing from you.