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Make Math Moments Academy Forums Community Discussion Water Cooler INTEREST IN MATH & DIFFERENTIATION


    Posted by Bonnie Herron on May 12, 2019 at 9:14 pm

    This past year was difficult because interest in school and learning was low.  There seemed to be a higher level of fixed mind set than in recent years and a higher than typical amount of students with some definite processing issues.  The range of abilities ran from a student who could not understand place value even when working with manipulatives all the way up to students ready to work on 8th-9th grade concepts.  I enjoy finding activities to assist all levels of students.  My great frustration is when so many students do not want to engage in anything that requires any investment in their time or thinking.

    Sarah Albert replied 3 years, 8 months ago 3 Members · 4 Replies
  • 4 Replies
  • George Garza

    May 13, 2019 at 1:43 am

    As for not understanding place value, have you seen the exploding dots website?  It walks students through how the number system works and, what the basic math operations mean in light of that.  It’s accessible enough that even my 5 year old pre-k son can do the activities (which he loves) but the higher level areas are deep enough that I’m confident my sophmores would have been challenged by it, and learned a lot in the process.

    The students will engage when the feel they are capable of it and when they feel safe doing so.  There’s a lot of stuff on the academy here to help with these parts.

    Also, if you aren’t already, try listening to the Making Math Moments Matter Podcast.  They spend a lot of time addressing how to implement Problem based classrooms, lots of advice there that can help.

  • Bonnie Herron

    May 14, 2019 at 8:19 pm


    I have used the exploding dots website.  It is a great resources for so many students.  Unfortunately, this one student has been working with it for weeks and he is still making minimal progress in his understanding.

    Thank you for the suggestions.

  • George Garza

    May 15, 2019 at 12:58 am

    If you find something that get’s that kid locked in and moving, be sure to let us know.

  • Sarah Albert

    July 13, 2019 at 8:24 pm

    Bonnie, I also struggle with the students who have what I call the “don’t care” mindset. I try to create problems and situations that apply to their life. Some students cared a little more after I let them play a Kahoot on Fortnite. Most of the time they really just needed more time to think and sort information out. Peer instruction also helps. We have a period called math lab and at times I will get students from another class come and work with their friends in my math lab. Other time I saw some success was using order or operation flash cards and playing war with a couple of students. One wanted to use the calculator so I let him. Eventually he understood that he didn’t need it.

    George, I’m going to check out the exploding dots, I’m not sure I’ve used it.