## New and Popular this week

### First Day of School

### Scramble Video.mp4

#### Graphing Linear Functions in Standard Form (Day 2 of 2)

### Give Students Choice to Increase Active Engagement with Informational Texts

### Images and Sounds that Convey Tone in Poetry

### Zoey bracelet problem

#### Explain a double

### Reflection

Looking back, this lesson was a success because I had several problems that gradually became more challenging and varied in structure.

By having multiple problems, students were be able to work at their own pace and ability levels. If I only had one problem for students to solve, my students who were early finishers would have become bored and under-challenged. My students who needed extra processing time would have felt rushed to finish.

By developing problems that slowly required higher level math skills, I was able to build a gradual staircase of complexity to support the progression of learning. When solving the first problem, students needed to recognize that a 16 ounce package of butter is equal to one pound before solving. The next problem was a little harder, requiring students to convert 48 ounces to 3 pounds. Students had to find how many 6 oz. cartons of raspberries they would need to purchase two pounds. Students developed the skills needed to solve the more difficult problems by solving the easier problems at the beginning. If I had given students the hardest problem to begin with, they truly would have struggled.

The structure of each problem changed. Sometimes, the students were asked to find the cost. Other times students were asked to find the number of pounds. With each problem, students continually had to make sense of the problem (Math Practice 1) and decide what information was needed (such as the number of ounces) and not needed (such as the cost).

#### Grocery Store Problem Solving

### Learning to Work Together

In my efforts to transition to CCSS this year, I am including a collaborative activity for the first time with this lesson as well as many others. Part of the requirement of Common Core is to give students exposure to range of texts and tasks, as well as to prepare them for real world applications. To me that means giving students opportunities to work with each other to complete a task or activity, that is meaningful and reflects back to the lesson.

I also realize that the task of sequencing apples being eaten to the core may not be a complex task that truly demonstrates student's understanding of the concept. As I gained more experience working with the Common Core standards, I also realized my students were much more capable than I originally gave them credit for. With this lesson, especially since it was taught at the beginning of the year, I originally taught the collaborative activity without the guided practice (which is more complex because it applies the sequencing skill to text). However, in rethinking the lesson, I think the collaborative activity can be taught first as an introduction activity, followed by the guided practice section.

An important aspect to collaborative work is to give students the opportunity to share with their classmates. That is why I pull them back into the large group at the end of the collaboration activity and have them share their work. Also, if you use a Promethean board, the ActiveSlate is a marvelous piece of technology. With this tool you can monitor your student work while standing in the back of the room, and still write on the Promethean. You never need to turn your backs on your students while you are writing!

#### Learning and Using Temporal Transitional Words

### Greek Mythology is a High Interest Topic...Who Knew?

I have found that one of the easiest ways to keep the kids intrinsically motivated is to have a high interest topic. The students want to learn more and participate in activities when they are invested in the subject. I was a little worried the first time I tried a unit on Greek mythology in my classroom. I worried about the interest level of Greek mythology. However, they surprised me. The students were interested and invested. It seems we can go so much further and deeper with the lessons when they are interested in the subject matter.