Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Math explorations

I am a huge advocate of the use of manipulatives and hands-on exploration.  Right before spring break we dived into volume.

Our first day was focused on exploring cubic volume with cubes.  It was such a great opportunity to watch them struggle through the challenge sheets and learn from one another with no pressure of assessment.  

Their task:

They had a great time exploring with cubes.  I also frequently allow them to work on the floor and move around.  They're ten and need to wiggle sometimes.  I might as well embrace this and provide these opportunities in the classroom.

They had a specific task sheet (for accountability).  I gave them ten minutes to explore, then they shared with a partner (Kagan hand up, stand up, pair up, and share).

One group was super excited that their blocks were ASU colored!

After a day of exploration, we dived into strategies, formulas, and problem solving.  We spent a few days on regular shapes before diving into the irregular ones.  I posed the problem as a challenge and let them struggle as a team.  Most groups figured out that they could find the volumes separately, then add them together.  

They had so much fun exploring volume.  Instead of just giving them the formula, I felt it was more important for them to have hands-on practice exploring exactly what volume means.

Who says math can't be fun?

No comments:

Post a Comment