Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Discussions in Math Class

  I had a small group of students that were struggling to master multiplication facts. They might recall the facts one day, but fail to retain them the next. We went back to the beginning and I taught them the "easy" patterns (0, 1, 2, 5 and 10s!) and had done a variety of activities with these facts. However, it was time for something new. I had them pull out their flash cards and sort them. Then we talked about it. I had a few "Oh!”s and a couple of “Ah-huh!”s so I knew we were finally on the right track. 
A copy of the lesson for this activity is available here: 

Multiply and Divide by Ten: Sort and Discuss

This is a great activity to support your work with multiplication and division. Students will need to have a fair understanding in the foundation concepts of multiplication and understand there is a link between multiplication and division. (I like to teach the two concepts together!)
      This activity is designed to help students see the patterns that exist in basic math facts and use this understanding to increase their math fact fluency.
      The Sort and Discuss is designed to have students sorting their math facts, then stopping for discussion to facilitate a deeper understanding of the patterns they see. Therefore, the group should work together. Remind students not to skip ahead to the next step, but rather stay with the group and participate in the discussions.
Discussions solidify understanding! 

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