# Archive for December, 2011

## Mathematical Practice Rubrics

Here are some great rubrics and supplemental docs that help to break down the mathematical practices.  Mimi has posted them as the preliminary work of a committee that  she is working on.  Mimi has a great blog also.  Look at these and let me know how they inform your work with the practices.  Remember that the practices are the lifeblood of the Math Core.  They carry the content.  You can’t do one without the other.

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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## Talk Moves in Math Class: Great for Guided Math Groups

Accountable talk is one of the linchpins of student achievement.  We move learning forward by having students engage in meaningful conversations.  Accountable talk is more than just having students answer questions or talk with each other randomly.  It means that students are accountable to each other’s thinking and reasoning.  It means that students are accountable to whether the conversation makes sense and when it doesn’t it means that students actively participate in clarifying the conversation.

Teachers facilitate this talk through a series of moves that can be categorized.  “Seemingly straightforward conversations can be leveraged to become authentic checks for intelligibility, coherence, engagement, and participation” (O’Conner & Ford O’Conner). Talk moves keep the conversation going smoothly and in a way that maximizes the learning. When children are working in small guided math groups, they have a greater opportunity to talk and learn.

Here is a great website that has videos and commentary about Accountable Talk.

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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## Numberlines are a great math model: Use in small guided math groups

The Math Common Core emphasizes the use of number lines to help students understand the math they are doing.  See this site to have a close look at how that looks across the grade levels.  Numberlines are underutilized across the grade levels.  Start using them in Pre-k (by having the students walk a big numberline).  In 1st and 2nd grade they should use big ones that they can walk and little ones that they can use to explore, model and discuss their thinking. In 3rd, 4th and 5th grades students can work on multiplication, division, fractions and elapsed time with numberlines.

Remember that numberlines are models for mathematical thinking.  Whenever students  are using models, they should be explaining their thinking as they work.  Be sure to do some of this in Guided Math groups so that students can spend time discussing the mathematics.  They should not only talk about how they are representing their thinking but what the math is behind the representation.  All students should have time to talk with each other, ask questions and respond, and small guided math groups allow them this time.

Please be sure to let me know how it goes!

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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## Common Core Task Writing Contest

The math common core team is having a math task writing contest.  You have until December 19th to submit tasks and they are paying \$200 for each accepted task.  See more information here!    See here for sample tasks. Go for it!

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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## Another Great CCSS Mathematical Practice Resource: Great Guided Math Activities

Here is a great site that expands on the meaning of the mathematical practices.  It discusses exactly what the elementary standard looks like in elementary school.  For example, in discussing the first practice about word problems, it show various ways to approach a problem.   They give many detailed examples   to get students to think deeply and critically. See two suggestions below:

You might leave off some numbers and ask children how they’d solve the problem if the numbers were known.

Or, you might keep the original numbers but drop off the question and ask what can be figured out from that information, or what questions can be answered.

Be sure to check it out!

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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## Middle School Common Core Resources

The Teaching Channel has a great set of CCSS resources.  Check out the link here.

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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## Stop, Look, Think and then Go! Teaching the CCSS Practices in Guided Math Groups

The Math CCSS practices are about teaching children how to stop and think before they start doing math problems.  They work hand in hand with the content.  They should be taught explicitly alongside with the content.  You should make posters of the practices and talk about them as you teach the content.  Dr. Phil Daro (one of the writers of the Math CCSS) talks about “delaying answer getting” so that students can learn the math.  Dr. Bill McCallum tells the students  “Don’t just do something, stand there” in the same spirit of getting them to THINK first!  So, in all of our teaching, we have to get them to Stop, Look at the problem, Think about it and make a plan and then go for it!  Do the math and be sure to explain their thinking!  Also, we have to get them to check it in a different way than they solved it!

To do all of this, scaffolds work great.  How are you scaffolding the thinking in your classroom?  Do you have posters heralding these ideas.  Do you give the students graphic organizers so they can show their  thinking in a clear and orderly manner?  How do you delay answer getting and get students to lay out a pathway.  (The other day in one of my schools we actually drew out a pathway and drew pictures showing all the steps along the pathway to solving the problem…modeling it, writing an equation, explaining our thinking, checking a different way and writing the answer).

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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## Math Common Core Resources: Bill’s Blog

Here is a blog about the Math Common Core by Bill McCallum, who is the lead writer of the math standards.  Check it out.  There are tons of great resources.

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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## Great Video Vignettes About the Common Core

Here is a great resource for rolling out the Common Core State Standards.  It is a series of video vignettes commissioned by the Hunt Institute and the Council of Chief State School Officers to further explain the CCSS. You get to hear the key Standards writers talking in their own words about how and why the Standards were developed. Here are some ways that states, districts, schools and teachers can use the videos:

Whole staff and grade level PD

Parent Workshops.

Resources:

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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## Here are some great resources for the CCSS Mathematical Practices: Whole group and Guided Math Group Resources

Here is a great set of resources for teaching the mathematical practices.

There is a great set of posters.  There is one for each practice.

There is one poster illustrating all the practices.

There is a cube with the practices on them. (Play these in small guided math groups).

There are some other resources as well.

Happy Mathing,

Dr. Nicki

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