2017-09-04 Numberless Word Problems

There are two things that I learned about toward the end of last school year that got me so excited I couldn’t wait to try them, Numberless Word Problems was one of them. One of my #eduheroes, Brian Bushart (@bstockus on Twitter), created this idea some time ago, and I was just learning about them. So, I wanted to get a couple reps in ASAP, and I was able to get a couple of reps in before the end of the year, and it confirmed my initial excitement.

With this school underway, I want to jump in early and often to get everyone on board with this idea, exposing all students to this opportunity and making it an ever growing area of powerful learning. On this journey last year, I was able to modify this into a sequence of learning events, where we start with a #NoticeWonder activity that builds the Numberless Word Problem the students create. Since students create the word problem, whether or not there are numbers is there choice, and it is so interesting what they come up with. The students smash their questions together to make a new question, and then they answer their question (or switch with another group and answer theirs) four ways.

Once the students have shared their answers and we’re all on board with the questions and answers, we compare our information to the state standards example(s). Students are always surprised that their questions are much harder than the state examples and think the state question is easy. Compared to previous times when given the state question, they typically shut down because it’s “too hard,” I’d say this is an amazing outcome.

Anyway, it’s still a work in progress and I’m super excited about it. Thanks Brian for sharing and making us all a little better.

2017-05-19 – Day 9 – Announcing Summer Book Study for #TWOTCW and #Mathconceptions & CVNiC Work

With the school year winding down, let’s  begin refilling ourselves, building our personal learning network, and improving our practice. Steve Wyborney‘s The Writing On The Classroom Walls #TWOTCW is a powerful teaching tool and bucket filler we will use in our first #Mathconceptions Book Study of the summer. Shane Ferguson (@MrFergusonMJHS) and I are super excited to have Steve lead us through our slow chat, highlighting key components of learning from point of view of misconceptions. Our chat will begin in June, with a pre-chat conversation starting on May 22nd. 

The year ends in more ways than one, we had our final get together of our CVNiC group today and we shared a lot of learning, reflecting, and guiding our path for the next school year and beyond. Although I could only be there for half the day, I used my new favorite tool for capturing learning (SnapChat and thanks to Ann Kozma @annkozma723) to capture that learning. The video below highlights my learning from this morning.

2017-05-14 – Day 4 – Summer Learning

I have been wondering what my learning journey would look like over the summer, and I found my answer today thanks to my amazing #PLN. Starting with Margie’s (@pearse_margie) posting of great summer reads, I first thought about all the books I read without really learning from over the summer. My second thought was a book study would be a great way to make this social and provide some folks to process with, making the learning a truly engaging experience. Then my thoughts went to #MathConceptions, as I was thinking of a slow chat concept over the summer, this would be the perfect way to implement a purposeful slow chat….but what book? Of course, the answer was right in front of me, I read The Writing On The Classroom Wall a year ago, and it has several key ideas I’d like to pull out again. In addition, there seems to me an idea about this idea and misconceptions that are often present in our instruction we could address through the lens of the book. Now just getting sure we’re all on the same page and there are enough people willing to share their thinking…

…Update, now we might even be led by the author! The incredible Steve Wyborney (@SteveWyborney) is willing to jump in and support, maybe lead, our discussions! Oh the learning that will occur, this might be the best summer yet!