On Wednesday afternoons during Math, you will find Mrs. Kurt's students working on Problem Solving! We start by gathering on the rug, near the SMART Board. The students close their eyes and visualize the story (or problem) as Mrs. Kurt reads it. We review that during Math we are Mathematicians and we know that there is more than one way to solve our problems. One other thing mathematicians know is they don't shout their answer out loud. If they do, our friends stop thinking and might just write down what we say. That's never a good thing…to stop thinking! So even though we may know the answer, we work really hard at not blurting it out loud! Then we get to work…
We go to our table spots and solve the problem. We can use a Math tool if we want to, such as blocks, counting bears, etc. We may need to draw a picture to help us. Maybe we can figure it out with a number sentence. Whatever strategy we use is fine…as long as we can show our thinking!
When we think we have the answer, we write it in the box. The rest of the paper is for us to "show" our thinking…how did we figure it out. Then we gather back at the rug, place papers under the document camera and students get to be the teacher and share their strategy for solving the problem!
Sometimes our answers are correct and sometimes they are not. But no worries, we are Kindergartners and we are just learning how to do these problems. We always talk about our work and make sure we understand how we solved it and if we solved it incorrectly, we work on figuring out how to fix it.
You may think some of these problems have pretty easy numbers. You are correct, they do. I start with easier numbers to teach the procedure to the students. As I feel students are ready to try more challenging number, I will assign them to students. That will begin next week!