Wonder Monday: This idea is the culmination of a lot of reading and listening that I have been doing. Jo Boaler's Mathematical Mindset, as well as her growth mindset course have really opened up my eyes to the need for math to be an open and creative field. I've also been reading "Becoming the Math Teacher You Wish You'd Had", which talks about the importance of a "notice" and "wonder"...what do kids notice about a problem? What do they wonder about?
So this is my thought for how to get kids thinking creatively, as well as how math is woven in to so much that we do. My plan here is to find a crazy or interesting picture each week, and just letting the kids start to wonder about it. I think it will get their creative juices flowing, and hopefully start to see math as an open subject, with a place for interesting questions. I think this will be a fun way to start each week!
Two Way Tuesday: This one came directly from a wonderful session I went to at NCTM. The idea of the two-way puzzle is that you add going horizontally and vertically. I think the puzzle aspect of this will keep kids engaged, and I can see it being useful for all kinds of review content....fractions, decimals, whole number, integers, and combining like terms are the first few that come to mind.
|In this example, the missing box in the top row would be 22, since -8 + 22 = 14. The bottom left square would be -5, since -8 + 3 would be -5. From there, you can fill in the rest of the squares.|
Number Talk Thursday: This is something else that I've been reading about, and something that I heard about at NCTM. The idea is basically that you give kids a problem to solve mentally, and then you let kids share their strategies for how they solved the problem. I tried this out a couple of times toward the end of last year, and I was amazed at what a great use of class time it was. The kids were highly engaged, and had tons of great strategies. It also allowed for great discussion as we compared strategies.
Quick Draw Friday: This is also something that I got at NCTM. The idea behind it is that you give kids a short look at a geometric drawing, and they try to reproduce it. Then you give them one more look, and a chance to revise. Then let kids share their vision for how they saw the picture, and how they re-drew it. I think this one can really lead to some great vocabulary, and my artistic kids will love it! The idea comes from this e-book.
So these are the ideas that I plan to use next year. If you would like a copy of the Google Slides shown above for this beginning of class routine, click here.
One other idea that I would also love to incorporate (but ran out of days!) would be to have a day each week dedicated to looking at a graph and focusing on what story it tells. I think this is really important as we live in a world surrounded by data, with graphs everywhere trying to convince us of one point or another. I may try to work this in somehow to my routine, but I can't decide what to give up! Why is there always more to do than there is time?????
What routines do you use at the beginning of class that you love?