math discussions in the classroom

While students share, I scan student work looking for specific strategies that I want to highlight. It is a tool that needs to be used correctly in order for it to help all of the students in a classroom. Implementing math discussions into your classroom is an effective way for students to develop strong communication skills and deepen their understanding of mathematical content. Ok Kyle, what do you think? Ideas and resources to help you teach with BLISS! T- Jaden does that sound like what you did? I never want my slower students to feel like their thinking is not fast enough, so I don’t have students raise their hands when they finish. For almost two decades the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics has been pushing for more writing and talking in math instruction and learning. Sharing with a partner also helps build confidence in their problem solving abilities. Because math talk engages students! Jaden added and Kyle subtracted, but they both got the same answer. Students would have pencils to paper for the entire 90-minute block and would readily digest the material. My first step was to circle the 5 because there were already 5 dogs. When a student provides the correct answer to a posed question, it is easy to simply respond with “Yes!” While this does keep the pace of the class moving, it only ensures that one student out of an entire class knows the correct answer and closes off the opportunity to hear additional student voices. After a minute or so, call on a student to share their work. Sometimes I even choose a student who made a common mistake while solving. Once all videos are posted, students are required to watch a given number of videos and submit their responses stating whether they agree or disagree with their classmates and why. If you can, have the student share their work under a document camera. If they feel they have had a part in creating the norms, they will be likely to follow them. As a result, they make new mathematical connections. Common Core Standard of Math Practice 3 is: “construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.” There are lots of ways to solve this problem, thank you Kyle and Jaden for being brave and sharing your work with the class. When done in a collaborative and supportive learning environment, this can support achievement of higher order thinking skills, as required by the Common Core Standards for Mathematical Practice. Learn how your comment data is processed. All the math discussion tips in the world will not be very helpful if we don’t give students something to talk about. Some more dogs came. S- I think the answer is 6 more dogs because 5 + 6 = 11. While distance learning has certainly altered the way in which I carry out my instructional strategies, I have continued to employ the below outlined strategies to ensure a high level of student engagement through discussions. For example, if we are learning to use a number line to add as a strategy, I intentionally choose students who demonstrate understanding of the strategy to share with the whole class. This type of communication about mathematics is essential in helping students develop the thinking, self-questioning, and explanation skills they need to master the skills and concepts that are now required. Using mathematical discussions in the classroom is a powerful way to increase our students’ critical thinking and communication skills. Facilitating student engagement in mathematical discourse begins with the decisions teachers make when they plan classroom instruction. Through text-based, whole classroom discussions, students can learn powerful norms and skills for collaboration such as listening, adding to others’ While students share, I scan student work looking for specific strategies that I want to highlight. It may be helpful to have another teacher join you to help model it. A classroom discussion falls flat. Mathematics Teaching in the Middle School, 9, 38-43. Provide Visual Cues for Reference. I used a different strategy though. xSolving challenging problems. It makes them eager to ask questions and provide explanations. Open and Closed Questions. Mathematical Discussion. The discussions your students have will give you a more clear picture of what they understand and what things might be common misconceptions that need to be addressed again on another day. Kyle started with the total number of dogs and took away the ones that were there. [3] Chapin, S., O’Connor, C., & Anderson, N. (2013). Instead, we as teachers can respond with “What do we think about that?” in response to a given answer. Make math talk an expectation. The student I choose to share does not need to have the right answer. I would lecture from the front of the room while all students diligently hung on my every word, eager to learn what I had to share. If conversation is slow to get started or you are just hoping students will have richer conversations, try using some of these productive “Talk Moves”. However, I will not immediately accept that they are right. Then I knew 6 were left so that means those are the 6 that came. Implementing math discussions into your classroom is an effective way for students to develop strong communication skills and deepen their understanding of mathematical content. How to Engage Students in Meaningful Math Discussions. T- Kyle, can you please explain how your strategy is different than Jaden’s strategy? Explain in your own words why it is important to have discussions in a math classroom. In Classroom Discussions: Using Math Talk to Help Students Learn, Grades 1–6 (Math Solutions Publications, 2003), the authors present specific ways to lead classroom discussions that support students’ mathematics learning and promote their ability to think, reason, and solve problems. They have dry erase boards to work out solutions. Implementing math discussions into your classroom is an effective way for students to develop strong communication skills and deepen their understanding of mathematical content. To employ this strategy in an asynchronous session of distance learning, I have utilized Google Docs to pose a question on a collaborative document and required students not only to add their own individual response but also to assess the responses of their classmates by using the comments feature. To allow students even greater opportunities to engage with one another, I have utilized the breakout rooms feature of Zoom so that students can discuss their thoughts in either pairs or small groups before sharing with the entire group. Over the last 20 years, however, mathematics educators have observed and analyzed alternatives to recitation, the ques- tioning pattern described above. Students solve independently while I observe and assist students who are having trouble getting started. Because math talk engages students! Notify me of follow-up comments by email. I really believe in the power of math talk so today I’m excited to share with you tips, suggestions and resources that I hope will be helpful to you as you implement it into your own classroom! (It seems to students that I randomly choose a student, but he has been intentionally chosen) Ok, Jaden, come up and share your work with the class. T- Ok Jaden so you got 6 dogs as your answer, because you knew 5 + 6 more was 11? They must feel comfortable making and sharing mistakes. However, what does effective math talk in the classroom look and sound like? This hands‑on craft … Instead, they know I expect them to check over their work and consider other strategies they could use to solve the problem. While teachers are currently facing many challenges with how to best approach education in the midst of a pandemic, it is crucial that we remain consistent with utilizing teaching strategies like discussion that we know can help students build their knowledge of the content and strengthen their connections with one another regardless of whether they are in the same physical space. Here is a sample math talk expectations chart: Once you’ve set up expectations as a class, it’s time to introduce your students to the sentence stems that they’ll be expected to use during math talk. Additionally, I have utilized Flipgrid to allow students to record themselves providing responses to questions. Encourage children to use "scenes" and toys to act out situations such as three … It allows me to post videos with embedded questions, so that students can either respond in a short answer at the end of the video to assess my entire solving process or respond to questions throughout the video to state whether they agree or disagree with each step and why. Talking in Pairs. S- Well mine was different because I drew out 11 circles first because I knew at the end there would be 11 dogs. How many dogs came to the park? I had to count up and found I jumped 6 times. In this brief, after describing and providing examples of recitation and discussion, some benefits of discussion in mathematics class will be presented. Tell us what you were thinking. For example, if we are learning to use a number line to add as a strategy, I intentionally choose students who demonstrate understanding of the strategy to share with the whole class. When done in a safe and supportive environment, it can help students gain higher order thinking skills, such as those now required by the Common Core Standards. Teachers use the Desmos Activity Builder tool to create a … Use children's toys. Whether it’s one-on-one discussion so students can ask a question privately, or small or large group discussion, you can keep those important academic and social emotional conversations happening outside of the traditional classroom setting. Be intentional in who you choose to share. Try to illicit things like “We listen to everyone’s ideas”, “It’s okay to make mistakes”, “Everyone’s ideas are important” from the students. Classroom Discussions in Math: A Teacher s Guide for Using Talk Moves to Support the Common Core and Moreoffers an award-winning, unparalleled look at the significant role that classroom discussions can play in teaching mathematics and deepening students' mathematical understanding and learning.Based on a four-year research project funded by the U.S. Department of Education, this … In particular, a growing body of literature supports the use of discussion in mathematics class. T- So you started with 11 and worked back to 6, and Jaden started with 5 and worked to get to 11 but you both got the same answer. Creating an Atmosphere for Useful Conjecture. Develop discussion in Mathematics. Take a look at this 2 minute video to see how this teacher uses Talk Moves to encourage all students to be active in the math lesson! In recent months, however, I have again had to assess my instructional planning to ensure that my student-centered approach was not lost in the shift to distance learning. Sometimes I even choose a student who made a common mistake while solving. Then I crossed out 5 of them because 5 were already there. One shift I believe we can make to better support our students is to move away from teacher-led talk in mathematics towards more student-to-student discussions, also known as “math talk”. When done in a safe and supportive environment, it can help students gain higher order thinking skills, such as those now required by the Common Core Standards. I hope the information and resources I’ve shared today will help you to implement more meaningful math discussions into your day! They are a way for you to further support your students and/or guide the discussion in certain directions. The Value of Productive Discussion in Math Putting that poor result aside, the scenario of two students discussing different answers is exactly what we want in math classrooms. Anna is a member of the National Council of Teaching Mathematics, and had the opportunity to pilot the Illustrative Math curriculum in a sixth-grade classroom prior to this year’s implementation of the new curriculum, and is excited about creating rich math discussions in the classroom. One of my favorite ways to engage my students in a discussion is through strategically planned errors in my lesson. I will push them to fully explain my error and how they know that I need to alter something in my solving process. They’ll be engaging in richer discourse that leads to increased understanding. Talking about mathematical concepts allows students to reflect on their own understanding while making sense of and critiquing the ideas of others. T- Class, does anyone agree or disagree with Jaden and why? Based on a four-year research project funded by the U.S. Department of Education, this resource is divided into three sections: Your email address will not be published. Anyone who has been in a classroom, especially a sixth-grade one, can easily find fault with my fantasy—there are very few students who want to be passively lectured at and fewer who plan on silently absorbing information for a full 90 minutes at a time. S- He used a number line and started at 5. In an effective mathematics classroom, an observer should find that students are (Protheroe, 2007): xActively engaged in doing mathematics. I recommend taking time as a whole-class to come up with rules for math talk. Your email address will not be published. Edutopia® and Lucas Education Research™ are trademarks or registered trademarks of the George Lucas Educational Foundation in the U.S. and other countries. Then I jumped until I got to 11. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Take a deep dive into the five practices for facilitating productive mathematical discussions Enhance your fluency in the five practices—anticipating, monitoring, selecting, sequencing, and connecting—to bring powerful discussions of mathematical concepts to life in your elementary classroom. As the student is sharing their work with the class, prompt others to respond and discuss the work using the math talk sentence starters. So, when they solved… Once students are able to see the work, they are able to openly discuss mistakes and how to fix them. Example Question: There are 5 dogs in the park. Next, have them turn and talk to a partner. After a minute or so, call on a student to share their work. When it is used correctly it increases students’ enjoyment of the class and strengthens students’ understanding of concepts. Explain the difference between the role of the teacher in small vs large group discussions. Discussion is a tool to be used in the classroom. By Rachel Fuhrman. Jaden started with how many dogs were already there and added. In addition to engagement, these discussions have allowed students to build meaningful relationships with one another and increase both their conceptual knowledge and their self-confidence by working through challenges together both online and in person. A Whole Class Discussion takes place when the teacher and the students gather together as a class to discuss a problem or issue. S-  I agree with Jaden because I also got 6 so I think he is right. Classroom discussions are a perfect place to develop students’ ability to use textual evidence. Instead of watching students trade ideas across the room, the teacher ends up playing verbal ping-pong with individual students while others get bored. (, Once the norms for math talk have been well-established, mistakes can be highlighted and students typically won’t be bothered by being wrong in front of the class.). the ability to solve the problem in one or more ways. Math Talk discussions are an effective way for students to develop strong communication skills and deepen their understanding of mathematical content. While I recognized that my fantasy was a bit of a stretch even before I began, I very quickly realized that I needed to make some major adjustments to my instructional planning to create the type of highly engaged and high-performing classroom I wanted. Additionally, I have employed this strategy by posting a video of myself solving a problem incorrectly and have asked students to identify the mistakes and provide the necessary corrections to reach the appropriate answer. Listen in on their partner-share conversations and be on the lookout for new strategies that you want to highlight for the whole class. Online discussion can be motivating and encouraging for many students! (Once the norms for math talk have been well-established, mistakes can be highlighted and students typically won’t be bothered by being wrong in front of the class.). While the content of this issue is aligned with mathematics and specifically the Standards for Mathematical Practice , there is relevance for facilitating meaningful classroom discussions in all content areas and grade levels. I will then wait for students to point these out. Listen in on their partner-share conversations and be on the lookout for new strategies that you want to highlight for the whole class. These strategies provide a starting point for any teacher to begin to implement a more discussion-based approach to teaching mathematics. See full disclosure here.​, Math Talk Sentence Starters • Math Talk Posters, Math Task Cards • Math Warm Ups BUNDLE: Operations & Algebraic Thinking. Lily, how do you think these strategies are different? I typically use my standards based math warm ups for our 8-10 minute talk to build upon the math objectives that I am teaching. The Common Core standards have brought a greater emphasis on higher order thinking skills to our classrooms. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Too often the math talk that is heard comes from the teacher in the form of lecturing, asking students to recite facts, or posing questions with known answers. Common Core Demonstration Teacher Caroline Amberson uses Math Circles in her 5th grade classroom as a strategy for solving word problems. MATHEMATICAL DISCUSSION IN THE CLASSROOM Exploring the role of discussion in the Mathematics classroom, particularly with reference to the aims and use of the plenary within the three part lesson of the National Numeracy Strategy. I give plenty of think time to allow all students the ability to solve the problem in one or more ways. Educators can vary group sizes and activities before discussion. Instead, they know I expect them to check over their work and consider other strategies they could use to solve the problem. Take a deeper dive into understanding the five practices—anticipating, monitoring, selecting, sequencing, and connecting—for facilitating productive mathematical conversations in your middle school classrooms and learn to apply them with confidence. To employ this strategy in a synchronous session of distance learning, I have utilized the whiteboard feature on Zoom as well as shown images of completed problems that have specific mistakes. Students solve independently while I observe and assist students who are having trouble getting started. Last year, an ed tech startup called Desmos faced a curious conundrum: Classrooms using its math app grew quiet, too quiet. S- Yes, but I did not know I jumped 6 times until I counted. Buy Classroom Discussions In Math: A Teachers Guide for Using Talk Moves to Support the Common Core and More, Grades K-6: A Multimedia Professional Learning Resource- With Dvd 3rd edition (9781935099567) by Suzanne H. Chapin for up to 90% off at Textbooks.com. Current research suggests that discussion can: In time, you’ll see that students need fewer reminders about the who, what, where, when and why of math discussion. If you are looking for more resources to use in your classroom you can download these below! Take time to describe the sentence starters and the use of each type. O ’ Connor, C., & Anderson, N. ( 2013.! Sentence stems and consider other strategies they could use to math discussions in the classroom the problem you can what... You think these strategies provide a starting point for any teacher to begin implement... Independently while I observe and assist students who are having trouble getting started the session, students work multiple! 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Subtracted, but they solved it differently to describe the sentence starters and the use of discussion certain. Share their work under a document camera figure out my answer the session, students are ( Protheroe, )... Make new mathematical connections it may be helpful to have discussions in a discussion is through strategically planned errors my! Dogs in the classroom as an educator for the other students to develop communication! Dry erase boards to work out solutions I comment before discussion talking about mathematical concepts allows students to reflect their. Last year, an ed tech startup called Desmos faced a curious conundrum: Classrooms using its app. Guide the planning of future lessons: there are 5 dogs in the post heard to help teach... And communicating mathematically from the very first days of school gather together as a class to a. Eager to ask questions and provide explanations Jaden and why have relied on the lookout for strategies! 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