Category Archives: Teaching in a Context

The Task Graveyard

It’s where my ideas go to die.  But like the mighty phoenix, I have one idea for a task that keeps rising from the ashes. It just won’t die. If Bruce Willis was a math task, I’ve seen his face. … Continue reading

Posted in Against the Norm, Intellectual Need, Making Math Accessible, Modeling, Planning, SMPs, Teacher Content, Teaching in a Context | 7 Comments

Conservation: The more things change, the more they stay the same

Every once in a while I stumble across Piaget’s 7 Conservation Tasks and then I move on. This week was different because my thoughts around conservation won’t go away. In a recent meeting with kindergarten and 1st grade teachers we discussed the importance of students being able to … Continue reading

Posted in counting, Estimation, K-2, Making Math Accessible, Strategy Development, Teacher Content, Teaching in a Context | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments

Get Your Model On: Modeling in the Elementary Grades

Dan Meyer’s work on mathematical modeling has been instrumental in shaping my own understanding.  I’m super thankful for Dan’s commitment to SMP #4 over the years. So when he recently posted that he was shifting gears, I was bummed.  It was like … Continue reading

Posted in 3-5, 3-Act Tasks, 6-8, Intellectual Need, K-2, Making Math Accessible, Modeling, Patient Problem Solving, SMPs, Teacher Content, Teaching in a Context | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments

When Student Thinking Hits the Wall: VNPS

First week back to school and I was chomping at the bit to begin working on my #1TMCthing. My quick backstory about Vertical-Non-Permanent-Surfaces (aka VNPS) I first found out about VNPS on Nathan Kraft’s blog which referred me to Alex Overwijk’s … Continue reading

Posted in 3-5, 3-Act Tasks, Making Math Accessible, Math Tools, Modeling, Number Sense, Patient Problem Solving, Teacher Content, Teaching in a Context | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

The Manipulative Whisperers: The model tells a story

If you listen carefully you will hear them. They sit motionless in every classroom, on top of desks, waiting to tell a story. Without the story they are nothing.  What’s most difficult is that you can’t speak for them because the … Continue reading

Posted in Making Math Accessible, Math Tools, Modeling, Patient Problem Solving, SMPs, Strategy Development, Teaching in a Context, Who Knows?, Word Problems | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments

Standards for Mathematical Practice…for Teachers

They’re really for me but I plan to share them at some upcoming PL sessions.  I’ll take any suggestions and comments of how to make them better… 1. Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them – Teachers of mathematically … Continue reading

Posted in Planning, SMPs, Teacher Content, Teaching in a Context | Tagged | 8 Comments

Pulling the Plug on a Lesson (The Do-Over)

I returned to the class where I sucked more than Maggie Simpson.  I wrote about it here. The highlights from yesterday’s do-over: For the most part it went way better and the additional pieces I created to scaffold the lesson helped out. Some … Continue reading

Posted in Making Math Accessible, Strategy Development, Teaching in a Context | 10 Comments

Pulling the Plug on a Lesson

I taught a lesson on Tuesday and it sucked…Real bad! It sucked more than Maggie Simpson sucks her pacifier!  I really felt for the 21 students, 4 teachers and the administrator who were observing. My face is still a little … Continue reading

Posted in Against the Norm, Making Math Accessible, Planning, Teaching in a Context | 6 Comments

Undressing Tables, Naked Numbers and Modeling

I had the 2nd grade names and the information I needed, so I created this table and asked the students WDYN? Immediately students recognized the names of their 5 classmates and the perplexity session began! Lots of different ideas and “noticings” were floating … Continue reading

Posted in Making Math Accessible, Measurement and Data, Modeling, Patient Problem Solving, Teaching in a Context | Tagged , | 3 Comments

A Thief in Teacher’s Clothes

I’ve stolen so many great ideas from the #mtbos and I have no idea what “teacher clothes” look like, but I know what educational awesomeness looks like…and it has inspired me over the past 2 years. If imitation is the sincerest form … Continue reading

Posted in 3-Act Tasks, Patient Problem Solving, Teaching in a Context | Tagged , , , , | 6 Comments