Another class norm that rose to the surface during my lesson is the practiceof only being called on or asked for an answer if you raise your hand. Not only wasit a foreign concept to not have to raise their hands to speak, but it was also a newexperience for two particularly shy students to be nudged into participating.Especially in math, my mentor wants correct answers and needs to move at a pacethat will accomplish all of his goals. Considering these motives, it is easy to see howshy or self-conscious children, are less likely to actively engage in math lessons and
learning. In her article “Looking at How Students Reason,” Ma
rilyn Burnsencourages teachers to ask for reasoning, to question correct answers, and to use
incorrect answers to better aid students in understanding their own and others’
thinking and strategies. I think that the setting of the rug and the close circlearrangement of my students was the best way to facilitate a seeing and hearing one
another and one another’s work.
VIDEO of looking at someones work
I also think Isuccessfully brought unique tactics and realized mistakes to the surface in order toshow students that all thinking and attempts at a problem are important in math.
VIDEO of Kevins alternative or Stephens mistake
Although the teacher-centered andhand-raising norms constrained my pedagogical focus of mathematical discussion Ido think that all 6 of my students were engaged and interested in what one anothershared about their thinking for most all of the lesson.Task and ToolsThe experience of this first lesson was really an amazing one. I thoughtfullyplanned out the tasks in my lesson to lead my students through a logical progressionof ideas. In the debrief after the lesson, both my Penn Mentor and Classroom
Mentor assured me that my lesson “was logical and well organized.”
Within eachtask (the warm-up, the card matching, and the representation of two and three-digit numbers) I used many and differing physical tools to try to support student thinkingand learning of place value. I used an easel white board that I pulled right up on therug and used that for my warm up and for scaffolding throughout the lesson. But from the beginn
ing, during my ‘hook
I realized that I would not be able to get through my plan. I was confident that only two of my students could explain why 31is larger than 13 and because I was planning for that concept to be somewhat of a
review, I think I adopted the approach of ‘get through as much as you can,’ rather
than narrowing the scope of my lesson and providing greater depth throughexamples. The next task served as a refresher of the bridge between a number and
it’s representation with Base 10 blocks. I accomplished this connection through a
matching game where the students each received a card and had to talk and showeach other their cards in order to find the correct match between number andpicture of Base 10 blocks.
This task proved successful both in it’s freeing power to
allow the students to talk to one another and work together to complete the task
and in it’s end goal to understand how
a number is represented with the blocks. Thestudents were very interested in this activity because it is rare that we have gamesor partner work as part of a lesson. However, as I discovered in the next task,although the students explained that they saw a 7 in the hundreds place and knewthat it corresponded with the 7 flats (100 blocks) the 7 meaning 700 was unclear.
VIDEO of matching game
Following this task, each student was given a