Reflection: Developing a Conceptual Understanding Shopping Comparison Problems - Section 3: Student Practice


When reflecting on this lesson, it is clear that two elements were more complicated than others: using variables to represent a problem and solving multi-step problems.

Example 1: Working with Variables

Example 2: Struggling with 2-Step Problems

Here's two things I could have done differently to aid conceptual development!

1. Teach students to create a bar diagram before writing comparative statements. The bar diagram offers a more concrete way of understanding the word problem whereas an algebraic equation is more abstract. 

2. I could have taught students to divide their paper in half. The first half would be for solving the first step and the second half would be for solving the second step. Many students got finished with the first step and thought they were done. I loved watching them grapple with and make sense of these problems! 

  Developing a Conceptual Understanding: Complicated Lesson Elements
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Shopping Comparison Problems

Unit 11: Multiplication: Single-Digit x Multi-Digit
Lesson 8 of 8

Objective: SWBAT multiply to solve word problems involving multiplicative comparison.

Big Idea: Students should be able to solve and illustrate multiplication problems using multiple strategies.

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Math, Number Sense and Operations, word problems, multiplication, multiplicative comparison
  110 minutes
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