Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum
Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum
Observing Student Problem Solving
|Introduction | How Many Vehicles? -- Using Counters | Problem Reflection #1 | How Many Vehicles? -- Using Numbers and Cubes | Problem Reflection #2 | Classroom Practice | Observe a Classroom | Your Journal|
Gabriella and Javier are working together and have chosen to use numbers to solve the problem. They have no difficulty getting started:
Gabriella: Since each car has four wheels, we can just keep adding 4 until we get to the 24 wheels.
The students' paper looks like this:
Teacher: Explain what you did.
Teacher: Let's check: 4 + 4 is . . .?
Teacher: And four more . . . ?
Teacher: What can help you find out how many you have now?
Teacher: Okay -- so where do you end up?
Teacher: Is there another way you can show the wheels on each car?
Teacher: How many cubes will you need?
Teacher: Right -- now show me with the cubes.
The students continue to work with the blocks. They call the teacher back when they have this configuration:
Teacher: I see what you have done. What is a stack of cubes for?
Teacher: I see. And how many cars are there?
Teacher: Now look back at the first way you wrote it. Do you have six cars there?
Teacher: How do you know that?
Teacher: Okay. Now I have a challenge for you. Can you find another way to do it so that you have different kinds of vehicles?
Teacher: Good. Now tell me what kinds of vehicles you might have.
Teacher: You got it! Now go to work. Remember, you need to show me your thinking . . .
The teacher moves on to another group while the students get to work. Later, they call her back with this configuration of cubes:
Teacher: What have you got here?
Teacher: How do you know that this will work?
Teacher: Do you think there might be more combinations?
The students continue working as the teacher moves on to another group of students.
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