Second Grade Math Warm-Ups: Week of March 7-11, 2016

This week was a FULL one!!  It was also another great example of how these warm-ups were meant to be used.  I know…wish it was always like that.  But anyhow, they were all directly connected to what we were doing in Math Workshop, and gave kiddos a great opportunity to think about the work we’d be doing later on in the day.   It was really cool to watch how their understanding would be deeper when we debriefed later on, or when they had a chance to discuss the problem with their partner or a small group.  Also, since they are connected to our regular math work, I have lots more to say about many of them than I will do here.  But that’ll be in a later post, so be sure to stay tuned!!  Here you go!

Monday

IMG_5782-min This one is related to the work we’ve been doing with The T-Shirt Factory, and would help them with the work they’d do later on with breaking up larger numbers into smaller groups.

Tuesday

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Wednesday

So we didn’t get a chance to discuss the problem all together on Tuesday, so I analyzed their answers on my own, and instead used their post-its to help me build the problem for Wednesday morning.  It was based on our work the day before in Math, as well as their answers here.

Thursday

This one was asked with the idea of stretching their thinking for later in the day about how a number can be broken apart.  Up til now, kiddos have typically just been thinking about a number in terms of hundreds/tens/ones.  I wanted to nudge them into thinking about a number in a variety of ways, using the parts to compensate and make problems easier.

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These were two close-ups I needed to share.  The first was just so you could see more of their answers to this one–they almost all connected this question to the work we did on Monday, even though I wasn’t sure they would.  Nice!  The second is just a great example of grit in our classroom.  Kiddos know that they are not to write “I don’t know” on a post-it; they always have to try something.  Often we use the stem “I don’t know yet, but here’s what I”m thinking right now…”  Do you see what Ella Marie wrote there?  Love it: “I have no idea what you mean by this, but I will do what I think you mean….76 is 70 and 6.”  This is a great example of trying something she isn’t sure is right, but that she feels safe enough to take a risk.  🙂

Friday

Again, this was connected to our work all week, and I wanted a way to take a little assessment, so they turned their work into me rather than putting it on the post-its like normal.  This will help me as I group and plan for our next days….after Spring Break!!

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Culture Projects Come Together

Remember how I told you about how we started reading all sorts of versions of Little Red Riding Hood?  And then how we started researching the cultures from which each version came?  Oh, and how I only was able to tell you those parts of the story because of the changes I’ve made this year?  Ok, good, glad you’ve been here so far for this much of the story, cuz here’s the rest. 🙂

Kiddos spent many days researching the cultures of many countries and several regions of our own United States: Germany, Ghana, Spain, China, the Midwest, the West and the Southeast (Cajun culture).  They worked in groups of three to discover important facts about many culture and geography topics: language, flag, location, landforms, holidays, food, games, religion, school, art and music.  One group decided to add info about clothes, as well.  This part of the project took longer than I had expected, mainly just because there were so many topics to find out about, and 4-Squares to fill in.

After enough days of research work for kiddos to have something to put in their planners, we worked together to draft what we thought our topic sentences should sound like.  Each group worked on their own to add in specific details about each topic, but we all used a general common starter for our first sentences to add continuity.  We worked on some general ones, first, to get the idea of a paragraph (topic sentences, details and a conclusion) solidified in our heads, and then tried one from one of our countries together.

Once we had agreed upon our starting points, kiddos got busy crafting their own words into their organizers.  These would then become each page of their book.  We saved the introduction and conclusion for last.

Eventually we got to the point where we were ready to put all of these fabulous facts and wondrous words into a draft of a teaching book that we could later share with our classmates.  There were many options for how to do that, and students were allowed to choose whatever format made the most sense for them. Most students chose to use Keynote at the way to create their book, as adding in the text features we would need would be the easiest in that app.  One friend thought Notability would be best for her, and two friends decided to hand write their books.  Regardless of the how, though, we add worked toward the same goal together.

Students then spent the next few weeks (yeah, i know, this project was LONG!!) putting together the words first (you have to build the house before you can decorate it!) so taht they could then plan how they would add in text features to enhance their reader’s understanding of the topic.  For that lesson we talked a little about “app smashing”, where you take more than one app and “smash” it together with one or more others to create something even better than you can do with any one single app.  Kiddos made plans for their text features and showed me what they were thinking, many of them smashing together their camera and Notability or their camera and Keynote.  Some friends smashing Safari in there, too, and used images from the internet.

Ultimately we will share our final drafts on our blogs, or print them to create actual books for our classroom (or both!) or we could publish them as ebooks and share with other readers in our school…we haven’t decided on this yet.  The first step was to share with each other, though, and we did this the other day before we left for Spring Break.  Kiddos were able to project their book on the big screen (either by AirPlaying from their iPad or just by displaying it through my computer since they had turned it in to me through eBackpack).

While we were listening to kiddos share about their cultures, two other meaningful things happened, thanks to my friend and teammate Mrs. Appelbaum (remember her and her amazing Tower Garden adventures?).  One, kiddos had a big sheet where they were to collect information from their classmates’ books; they could write or draw anything they found interesting, a connection they made, something didn’t know, something they wanted to remember, etc.  It made it so much easier to pay attention through the 12 books we were able to share that day.

The other super smart thing that happened was that I was able to knock out much of the grading part of this project while the presentations were taking place.  This project was a big part of kiddos’ social studies, speaking and listening and writing grades.  I was able to sit with our rubrics on my lap and make notes about what I observed right in the moment.  this is really a big deal because I usually leave things like this until the last minute, and this was just such a smart, efficient suggestion.  Thanks, Shannon A.!

While my kiddos’ final drafts are WAY better than this one, here’s an idea about what they ended up looking like.  I’ll share theirs when we all come back in 4th quarter, but here’s mine (well partially finished one) about Australia:

 

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Please let us know what you think!  This project has definitely been a motivating and engaging one for us in Rm. 202.  Can’t wait to share the final drafts with you!!

 

Second Grade Math Warm-Ups: Week of February 29-March 4, 2016

Remember last week when my kiddos were my teachers?  This week it kind of happened that way again–again without my real planning it that way.  And you know, sometimes those are the best kinds of warm-ups–when they happen at just the right time as just the right response to something that happened in our classroom.  Here we go. 🙂  (Oh, and I think somehow we ended up with a warm-up for every morning this week!  Hot dog!)

Monday

We ended last week with the beginning of our new addition/subtraction unit, so I started with a 3-digit problem.  And no, it wasn’t until we sat down to talk about the solution that I realized that the answer went up and over 1,000.  Oops.  But hey, if you can do those hard ones, then everything else is just cake, right?  No one seemed to notice.  And many of them got it right, which was nice and exciting.  We talked about both compensation (making the problem easier by making 620 + 541) and splitting it by place value to add.

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Tuesday

Ok…so Tuesday’s warm-up didn’t end up the way I thought it would.  (Man is there a theme here lately?)  I wrote this problem BEFORE school, knowing that it would tie into our place value work, as well as remind them of work we had done previously with this topic.  And then I had some AMAZING professional development work in math with Kara Imm (an amazing teacher from Mathematics in the City out of NYC) and the rest of my 2nd grade team that afternoon.

(Sorry, she’s so amazing I have to stop and introduce you to her for a second. 🙂 )

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During our planning we decided that we were working to launch a new investigation called The T-Shirt Factory, which is based in the context of a family who starts a t-shirt factory.  Nicholas, the son in the story, works with rolls and loose shirts to organize and keep inventory, and the kiddos work alongside and within this context to solve similar problems to the ones he encounters.

Anyhow, after I had written this problem, we planned our lesson and I soon realized that my warm-up didn’t really fit in the pacing and sequence we’d decided upon.  It wouldn’t make sense further on down the line if we discussed it on that day.  So instead of fulling working it out and digging into how and why and what their strategies were, we just shared our initial thoughts.  And then, like  a happy accident, I figured another way I could use this debrief and the results I got to help plan my next lesson–just not in the way I thought I would originally.

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When we met on the rug to talk about this problem, I started with questions.  They were to listen for the number of 10s they had marked on their post-it and then stand in a certain place in the room.  I called all combinations that kiddos could have said (9, 2, 5, 52, 29, 20, 500), and we ended up with two groups: 52 and 2.  This was not surprising, based on two common understandings of what I mean when I say “tens” and how numbers are “inside” other numbers.  Next, instead of sharing out how and why 52 was the correct answer or why one group only said 2, each group talked to a partner in their SAME group to share why they had decided upon 52.  The focus was on communicating how they knew; this is something that is tricky for many of my friends to whom mathematics comes easily.  The “2” group did the same thing within their ranks.  Then, I paired them up with someone from the opposite group and they had to then work to convince their new partner why their number made more sense.  And then we stopped, knowing we’d pick up that same conversation again on a later day during our t-shirt factory work.

Wednesday

Remember the theme of unexpected results?  Here’s another example of that.  Usually when it’s time to talk about the math warm-up, we meet together on the rug and talk about the problem.  We don’t necessarily refer to specific post-its, these just serve as the kiddos’ opportunity to think about it prior to our conversation.  On Wednesday I was out of the classroom during our normal debriefing time (because of more math conversations with Kara and the team), so I only had their morning work to look at.  I gathered info about who knew what to do with these 3-digit numbers and who still showed that they needed to continue to practice (it was about 50/50 I’d say).  It gave me an idea, then, for the next day’s problem, building on the solutions I saw given here with this one.

Thursday

First of all, I have to giggle as I remember when Ja’Mia asked me today if this story was true.  Of course, my friend’s son volunteered to help us with our math lesson! (wink, wink!).  But really, I did see my friend’s son that day, so there’s something. 🙂

Ok, this one taught me something I had forgotten about 2nd graders: 1) they haven’t yet done a problem like this one where I’d asked them to analyze someone else’s thinking, and 2) they answered ONLY the question I ask.

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See?  The question (which I crossed off today during our conversation as we talked about what the problem really wanted us to think about) could simply be answered with a quick and simple “yes” and so most of them did that.  They probably thought I had lost my mind by giving them a question like that!

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I did have a couple who did get to the thinking I was looking for (but who knows how since I asked the question in the TOTAL wrong way!).  For example, I wanted kiddos to notice that rather than just taking jumps by place value (200 + 70 + 5), the tiny jump of 3 made sense next because it got us to a 10, which is easier to work with.  That resulting 570 also creates an easy double to add mentally (570 + 70, like 7 + 7), leaving a quick +2 to finish up.  Here’s Khalani’s answer example:

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Friday

The whole “my friend’s son” thing got me to ask my real son for some help and he was more than willing to do so (plus it meant that if he was helping me with my homework that he didn’t have to work on his own!).  I gave him the problem 519 + 365 and asked him to solve it using a number line to model his thinking since that’s what we’ve been working on.  He did not do it on purpose, but we realized after he finished that he had left out a part, and we actually decided that was a great thing to have happen; my kiddos might have more to talk about if they weren’t just reviewing their own work and saying “yep, it matches.”  Having a different answer and having to figure out why it is different was a new kind of thinking for them.

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We didn’t have time to completely finish the debrief, but we were able to talk about how he started, like why he put 519 first as well as why his first jump was just 1 rather than 300, which would have been a typical “place value” jump.  They talked through what he had done and noticed that he misrecorded his +30 jump as only a +3, and that his answer seemed too small; most figured he had forgotten to add on the last 300.

This week’s warm-ups took on a new role.  Our thinking was really deepened, and we dug into how and why in a way we haven’t done in a while. Plus it was great to be able to have 5 in a row!!

What do you think about our thinking?  What had you tried with analyzing others’ mathematical thinking?  Do you have any problems you can share with us?  We’d love to hear from you!!