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Sherry

Inquiry: How do I get students to fully explain and support ideas with the appropriate calculations and technical language with clarity and full justification of reasoning?


I chose this question because I was receiving work from students that only had the words to explain their reasoning and no support with calculations.  Even the work explanations were not fully justified.

Instructional Strategies:

I used an assessment question as a tool for learning.  As a class, we looked at a couple of sample of Level 4 work that students had done for that questions.  I asked students to reflect on the answer that they gave for the question and improve their solution.

I also added the anchor charts to the classroom wall that were discussed at Leaders’ Council (Math Heads) by the Head at F.E. Madill.

I tried giving these types of questions for assessment on a separate day from the rest of the test.  Many students did give more detailed answers in this case (in the 2D class).  This was not the case in the MAP 4C class.

I did see some improvement for many students in terms of the depth of answers given and the supporting evidence with diagrams and calculations.  For a few students, there did not seem to be any movement at all regardless of the strategies that I was trying.

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Barb

Barb

Jillian McConkey & Barb Breen – Question Structure from Kim McGill on Vimeo.

Barb taught students how to deconstruct questions.  Students learned how to use T-charts to show their thinking when answering Math questions.  Watch Barb and Jill talk about question structure. Structure of a Strategy

Inquiry: Did anyone (boys) feel that the Question Structure Format improved your ability to solve word problems? How?


I had between 3 to 10 boys from each of my class strongly feel that this format was a much better way in which to solve word problems.

Student Quotes

This student has an IEP. He felt that this format:

“Is much easier to work when everything is spread out. It also helps you work on the task at hand.”
– Student #1

As the student’s teacher, this format helped the student structure his work in a step by step format that made sense and that allowed him the freedom to answer the word problem in a variety of different ways.

“I liked it better because it helped me understand the questions more and made my marks go up on the work sheets”.
– Student #2

The Question Structure format was successful for this student again because of the structure and yet freedom in answering the word problem. I observed that this student had more to demonstrate than the other method used.

“This format helped my ability to solve problems by letting me explore different ways to solve problems with the how and why. It also made solving problems much easier because of the many ways the format allows us to solve a problem.”
– Student #3

Again, structure with freedom.

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Heather & Paul

Heather & Paul

How can we improve written communication in grades 8 and 9 Math?

Heather Durnin & Paul Bartman from Kim McGill on Vimeo.

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Lynda

Lynda

How do I help students incorporate writing into complex solutions?

Lynda Hemming – Inquiry – Math from Kim McGill on Vimeo.

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