In these two days, now that students have completed two of the models, I try to focus many of my conversations with them on the goal that they will make mathematical statements about the relative sizes of the rooms on each of the 3 floor plans they created, and compare these sizes with the (hypothesized) actual size on the plan de l'Orphelinat.
It is critical to expect students to explain their decisions, including those they can no longer justify. Finally, they work with a partner to discuss similarities and differences between their plans and to reach consensus on some of the design characteristics.
It's important to do this short opener before the lesson begins to keep the students focused on the fact that the underlying mathematical purpose of this activity is to find the area of rectilinear shapes.
Project the following examples rectilinear shapes to practice how to find area using multiplication (or repeated division). Guide students to remember that an array can be decomposed into ones, twos, fives and tens (teacher key). These are just examples - students may break the arrays up in other ways. At this point, as long as it is helping them make sense of the mathematical models of multiplication/ repeated addition, accept any equations. Eventually, it makes sense to recommend the fastest / most expedient model. (5 x 10) as opposed to (2 x 5) + (2 x 5) + (2x 10) + (1 x 8) + (1 x 2) .
This can also be done as a paper pencil task or with students looking at the model on their own computer screens and writing out the problems on a whiteboard or paper.
Now that the students have gone through two rotations of this activity I defer to them as the experts and call upon them to first reflect and then think about what advice they would like to share with their classmates about how to best proceed through the stations.
I found that the advice students gave to each other was very specific, direct, and addressed problems that I wouldn't have necessarily thought of (such as a place on the Plan d'Orphelinat where the squares weren't a consistent size, so a child decided to divide them in half), or the idea of copying and pasting several versions of a shape on the Google Draw document before placing them in the final format.
My role during this core part of the lesson is to facilitate student progress by insuring technological glitches are promptly resolved and that students understand the steps through which they much progress to complete the given tasks. I ask guding question to encourage deeper thinkign and model sentence stems with specific vocaublary to support precise and meaningful student theories and answers.
Station One - Paper Cut Out Model
To ensure that this this station continues to run smoothly I make certain that there are enough paper pieces cut. If needed I provide another copy of the checklist of rooms.
Here are some examples of student activity at this station:
Station Two - Google Drawing
As a new group starts out at this station I make sure that they are on task and able to surmount any initial technological hurdles, using the station two student directions.
Station Three: Plan de l’orphelinat - A Real Architect's Plan
I monitor this group carefully to insure that they are breaking the task into manageable chunks.
Station Four - Virtual Graph Paper
The key thing with this group is to have students save their virtual graph to the desk top with a consistent naming convention (VGraphName) and then immediately have them reupload it to their Google Drive or gmail account so that it isn't lost.