Find answers, ask questions, and connect with our
community around the world.

  • Lizann “Lizzie” Herrera

    February 23, 2022 at 10:43 pm

    This week I got to co-teach with a 6th grade teacher who was beginning a unit on Expressions and Equations. We used the Shot Put lesson to introduce this concept. I decided to try the Shot Put because it matched very well with the unit and it really helped watching Kyle’s video teaching it virtually.

    During the lesson, students were actively talking math the whole time! I had one student who kept trying the “silly” answers and I kept writing those down and pretty quickly he began noticing things he thought as silly and I was able to spin them as something important for the lesson! (Priceless!). One student even noticed the yellow markers with the 22 or 23 on them and was trying to do their estimation based on that notice! The low-mid-high estimation was tricky for students, they were estimating as 42, 42.5, and 43 – so that was a harder and new concept to wrap their brains around.

    The lesson itself took about 80 minutes, so the consolidation piece ended up being all me, rather than students coming up with an equation to explain the concept mathematically. (That rush you get of “OMG I have to finish this lesson!”) However, I believe the students achieved a much better understanding of where the numbers in the equation were coming from and the teacher now has a lesson to “look back to” and make connections with during the rest of the unit.

    My wondering is, what now? Now that they have the algorithm, do we continue with the “normal” textbook practices and do another MMMTM task for the next unit? Are there other interesting problem based lessons that we can incorporate for students to work through, independently or in groups, so that they’re not working with “naked problems”? How do I guide my teachers to trust the process and continue with this?