Sunday, March 12, 2017

Maths Relays and Literacy

Each fortnight a Maths Relay is run in the classroom using mixed ability groups comprised of three to four students. The composition of the group changes each time to encourage students to get to know each other and to be exposed to learn new strategies from each other. Research has shown overwhelmingly that students can often learn just as much from each other than they can from their teacher! Explicit modelling is also provided by myself unpacking the questions the groups identify as the trickiest ones. At the end of each relay the children rate themselves on their co-operation skills and write down the two questions they found the most challenging, and why if they can put that into words. These type of questions and the strategies needed to unpack them are then taught. A lot of the ability to successfully solve mathematical problems is closely tied to students' abilities to both comprehend and unpack the questions. Each group has a highlighter pen. What is the key information? What information is irrelevant (not needed)? What is the exact question that needs to be answered? Have we looked closely at the written text and also the visuals supplied with the question?  Sometimes the kids choose the first answer which looks reasonable without looking closely at all the options. 

Here a lot of teams answered 4... instead of finding out how many lamingtons they wrote how many boxes 

All the possible answers need to be checked against the given graph. Kids sometimes don't unpack the graph well.

Teamwork is so important. Many minds can make light work. 

Students take turns to read out the question

A "No." means back to the drawing board. What didn't we consider?

Everyone can offer something to the conversation. Let's listen!

Be a team sit so everyone feels involved, corner are good.

Team work in action. Stay focused.

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