1st day of school

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SWBAT apply the mathematical practices to solve a problem.

Big Idea

In this lesson, I’m introducing students to the vocabulary and the practices. They will be looking at problems that support the practices and then trying out a problem to use the practices.


15 minutes

The students will be completing a survey for me called vocabulary knowledge rating.  I’ve created this survey to see where students rate themselves when it comes to the vocabulary used in the mathematical practices.  I will be using the VKR throughout the week to let the students self-assess their understanding. 

Looking at the practices

30 minutes

I’ve created a power point using problems I found in Dr. Jane Shielack’s article on  Using Questioning to Promote the Common Core State Standards for Mathematical Practice.  I liked the problems she presented and thought they would be good to drive home the essence of each practice.  The power point goes through each practice and I will be discussing with students what I’m looking for as they engage in each one. 


MP1:  I will be using the “kid-friendly” term sense-making.  I want the students to know that during MP1 I will be looking to see if they can find a starting point to the problem.  The purpose of MP1 is to get the students thinking about the problem and not giving up.


Shielack says to use the following prompts when applying MP1


• What is the question you are trying to answer?

• What information do you have that can help you answer the question?

• What other information do you need to answer the question?

• Where might you get that information?

• What other questions do you need to answer before you can answer this one?

• How might you figure out the answers to those questions?

• How could you show the information in the problem a different way?

• How is this problem like another problem you’ve solved?


MP2:  I will be using the “kid-friendly” term reasoning.  In MP2 the students need to focus their attention on the meaning of the numbers and operations.  We can ask them questions like how many or how much.


MP3:  I will be using the “kid-friendly” term arguing.  I will also follow up with arguing ,but in a good way.  Students need to learn to justify their answer, whether it be in writing or verbal. Students need to focus not only how they got their answer, but how do they know it’s correct.  They will need to convince me that their answer is reasonable.


I will be using the “kid-friendly” term models.  For MP4, students must learn to find how to appropriately represent the numbers or operations with an equation or expression


MP5:  I will be using the “kid-friendly” term tools.  For MP5, has the students finding the right mathematical tool to appropriately represent the problem. 


MP6:  I will be using the “kid –friendly” term precision.  For MP6, the students will be using mathematical language, work efficiently and use appropriate labels.


MP7:  I will be using the “kid-friendly” term structure.  When I talk about MP7, I’m going to let the students know that this is when we are ourselves “why”.  Why does this work this way?  When you can ask why and you can come up with a solution that works always, you are using structure.


MP8:  I will be using the”kid-friendly” term patterns.  In MP8, students will be looking for patterns and making statements about the patterns.


Monkey Business

30 minutes

I chose this problem because it’s challenging enough without being so complicated that the students will give up.  I’m going to let the students know that they will be focusing on MP 1,2,3,6, and 7

Students will need to read the problem carefully and find a starting point (MP1), they will then need to figure out what the numbers represent by using the correct mathematical language (MP2 and MP6).  Then they will need to think through the “why” part of the problem to discover that they can work backwards to find their solution (MP 7).  Finally, I will have the student convince me that their answer is correct.  I will also have them partner up to discuss their strategy and solution. (MP3)


10 minutes

I’m going to have students return to their VKR from the opening part of this lesson and look through the vocab again to see if they understand any words better after this lesson.  They will be doing a think pair share to bring this lesson to a close.

Think -  about the vocabulary words “are there any words you know better now”

Pair  - Pair up with your shoulder partner

Share -  with your partner the words that make more sense to you know because of today’s lesson