Learning is sometimes hard!

 

I am excited about our math groupings this year.  In my math class, we'll be tackling challenge problems in addition to our regular class work.  A big goal I have for fifth graders is to not only accept frustration, but to embrace it!  It is through struggle that we develop understanding.  Kids often call errors "mistakes" but I like to think of them as "bonus problems."  When we recognize where our thinking was off, figure out what we did, then figure out a new plan, we are doing such great work.

 

In the corner or room 216, we have a Math Lab.  This is where students will find challenges.  Some challenges are big, and may take time.  They may be the kind of problem that keeps percolating in the back of one's mind.  Others are brain teasers or logic problem.  As we learn math games, I add them to the Math Lab.  And there is a cupboard of math tools. I believe strongly that learners need to do and feel as well as think about math. Sometimes moving objects about helps.  Sometimes a 100 chart is the right tool.  There is always graph paper, rulers, fraction strips and more.  We have already begun using it, and I look forward to putting students in charge of keeping things in order.

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