Reflection: Rigor How much do I have? : Our Strategies for Adding Coins (Part I) - Section 2: Introduction to New Material


During the introduction to new material, I ask students to develop and share their own strategies for counting coins.  When I taught this lesson to my class I found that the majority of students chose to count on (start with the largest number and count on--15, 16, 17, 18...)  or to skip count.  Some however found success with adding the amounts using column addition or totaling the coins within each denomination (i.e: adding all the dimes together) and then adding the sums of each coin denomination.  A few students found success by drawing the coins and writing the worth of each coin inside the drawing.  They then started to skip count using those drawings. 

It is important not to tell a student that they chose the wrong strategy.  However, if a strategy is very cumbersome or is causing a student to not solve the problem correctly, you can guide students toward a new strategy.  For instance, students in my class who were using column addition and adding up the worth of every coin were oftentimes making small mistakes and not getting the correct answer. I suggested that they consider adding up within each denomination (i.e: add up all the quarters) and then add the sums using column addition.  This strategy allowed the students to be much more accurate and most students were able to be successful. 

  Student Strategies
  Rigor: Student Strategies
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How much do I have? : Our Strategies for Adding Coins (Part I)

Unit 10: Money
Lesson 2 of 11

Objective: SWBAT add coins to create a total.

Big Idea: Students use their skip counting skills to count and total coins.

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