My classroom feels like a unique place for learning math, though it may be similar to others found in the MTBoS. It is nothing remarkable, extraordinary or spectacular, but it is also not the standard, expected, cookie-cutter lesson.
My classroom is the synthesis of collaborative learning, discussion, problem solving, making connections, hands-on activities, number talks, and interactive student notebooks. It sounds like “why?”, “how do you know?”, and “convince me”. It looks like partnerships, chart paper, stations, dice, and whiteboards.
For both teacher and student alike, it is a place to take risks and a place to grow. It is an environment crafted by my pedagogy and my practices, ever-changing as I learn more and more.
And perhaps it is because my classroom is not one distinct thing, that my classroom is distinctly mine.
Sounds like a classroom I would love to observe!
Thank you, Bethany! One of these days I hope to build up enough courage to video myself. It would be a great opportunity for reflection.
Sounds like a great learning environment! I heard about number talks a year or two ago and I am thinking about starting them in my class.
Number Talks have just become a staple in my 6th grade classroom, the result of major frustration with prime factorization and multiplication skills (http://shlager180.wordpress.com/2013/10/03/day-12/). Worried that my 6th graders might find them insulting made me shy away, but my students were engaged and excited when they realized how factors are flexible!
I would love to hear more from you once number talks are integrated into your classroom. 🙂
It sounds like “why?”, “how do you know?”, and “convince me”.
Exactly how a math classroom should sound. It may not seem remarkable to you, but I think it’s great!
Regarding prime factorization: I don’t know if you’ll find it useful or not, but this is what helped my 5th-grader understand. Prime Numbers Are like Monkeys.
Thank you for the suggestion! The word association is a great way for students to recall the definition of prime, and its a great vocabulary lesson. Fact fluency, however, has been an impediment. Still working on that one!