Posts tagged problem solving

5 results

A long-winded answer to Annie’s query

So Annie from the Math Forum posted the following tweets today: After recent talk about notice&wonder, sense-making, T said, “Sounds great, but I have to finish Ch4 by end of Nov or else…(1/2) — Annie Fetter (@MFAnnie) November 24, 2014 …I don’t have time for that ‘habits of mind’ stuff because I have to cover too much content.” What say you? (2/2) — Annie Fetter (@MFAnnie) November 24, 2014 I didn’t think I could reply in 140 characters (or even 280), so here goes: I used to think the same way. I have to cover x, y, and z by the end of the year and I wouldn’t have enough time to do the Math Forum Problems of the Week or problem solving or (fill in the blank of your favorite thing we don’t get to). This year I decided that I was going to do the Algebra Problems of the Week with my Algebra 1 classes. Every 2 weeks, […]

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Learning Lessons About PoWs

This is the first year I am using The Math Forum’s Problems of the Week in my classes. I have been aware of the Problems of the Week (PoWs) for quite some time but I have never used them in my classes before. My involvement as an EnCoMPASS Fellow since last summer has encouraged me to try them in my classes this year. Right now, I am working with the Algebra PoW in my Algebra 1 classes. So far, I have done 2 PoWs with them. We are finishing work on Kristina’s Code (PoW #2704 – which you can see after this week if you have a PoW membership) this week. I’d like to take a few moments to share some observations I have about using the PoWs in my classroom. I will be honest, I have pretty much just put the problems in front of my students with very little instruction to date. We begin on Monday (or Tuesday) by […]

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Students Hate Word Problems

Today, I quizzed my Advanced Algebra 2 students and part of the quiz included Linear Programming problems. They did poorly. Part of it may be that we did it before Thanksgiving, and part of it may be they just don’t care about word problems. As they came into class today, several of them commented something along the lines of “I hate word problems. Why do we have to do word problems?” My answer was that word problems are the application of the mathematics, and it shows you where in the “real-world” that the mathematics is used. They weren’t thrilled. Over the last few years, I have taught word problems less and less. Mainly, this has been because we have so much material to cover in Algebra 2 and I have to make sure they are prepared for state tests as well. But I also realize I am doing them a disservice. Word problems are the application. How are they going to be […]


Trip – class plan version 1

I am trying to set this up as an in-class deal with my lower-level freshmen. I am trying to follow what Dan Meyer set up as a framework here. Here is the setup. (note, page 2 is blank) Ask students for what they wonder about this slide. I am looking for them to question why the trips look basically the same and have different times. Here is where I am new to this and looking for guidance… I think I would provide to them the routes the websites came up with. They have previous experience with d = rt, so I don’t think I will need to provide time to instruct them on it (although they may need some coaxing to come up with it). I think I pretty much let them have at it. I am debating whether to break them down into smaller groups and each group has one or two of the four routes to look at or […]

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It has been a crazy week.  I picked up a class at the last minute for this week.  It was offered by The University of Akron and The Akron Chamber of Commerce and it was titled “Opening Doors to STEM in the Workplace.”  We are supposed to get a nice stipend, 2 hours of graduate credit (paid for!), and they fed us lunch every day (good eats all week!).  It was WELL worth it in spite of the timing.  I got a much better understanding of what businesses are looking for in employees. Oh – and at some point, there is a great WCYDWT about CFL and why they are designed in a spiral vs. the original design of 2 upside-down u-shaped tubes. No time to think that through right now (not teaching Geom now) – more about that later. What troubles me now from this workshop is that the last couple of years I have gotten away from doing […]

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