Building Our Problem Solving Tools

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SWBAT apply their understanding of multiplication and division to model and solve word problems.

Big Idea

Students can solve real world problems using their understanding of multiplication and division and the relationship they share.

Quick Check

10 minutes

Yesterday we looked at math problems that had a missing number and we had to think back and use what we know about multiplication and division to find ways to solve it. We didn’t all choose the same way to solve, which is what is cool! I show you tricks and tools, and you can use the one that makes the most sense to you!

The common core requires that students to make sense of problems and persevere in solving them (MP1) so I incorporate word problems into each instructional day. Today I want them to work in groups so that they can construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others (MP3). Group work is a great opportunity to teach students about accountable talk and how to defend their reasoning and communicate precisely to others (MP6). My goal here is to ensure students can develop fluency (3.OA.C.7) by quickly recognizing the relationships between multiplying and dividing (MP7). 

Independent Practice

35 minutes

One way we are going to become better at solving math problems is to keep working hard at it. You’ve shown me how to find relationships in numbers and we’ve been working very hard at problem solving. Today you’re going to have to read problems that require you to problem solve. It might be multiplication and it might be division, there might be missing numbers and they might be tough- but I want you to use your problem solving tools to help you solve your problems and show your work!

I have cut up word problems on their tables and students will have to alternate between the operations. In order for students to develop fluency in solving problems they must be given time to practice applying the skills they have learned. Students choose problems, show their work to solve and then move on to another problem. If they have tried using their tools and are having trouble, I will help them get on the right track, but it’s important not to give them the answers. It is important that students are able to justify their reasoning and the validity of their answer (MP3, MP4, MP5, MP6) so I expect to see their steps for solving written out. I do not accept a single answer to justify their work, they must also show me their steps.

(pictures of ind work- division probs on lined paper)