Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Do you ever feel....

Do you ever feel like the "fly by the seat of your pants" moments sometimes end up being some of the best moments? I had that happen to me today. Our new math program is completely web-based and as much as I like having web access to lessons (no more carrying home a teacher's manual as big as a pizza box) and student playlists (the projected lesson) what I don't like is that none of it is very interactive. I want kids up and moving, I want everyone to be able to participate (ACTIVELY) and to be engaged in what we are doing. I also strongly believe that 1st graders need to be able to manipulate their learning as much as they can to better understand complex concepts.

 So that being said, today was a "fly by the seat of my pants" day in hopes of bringing these concepts to my lesson.
Kiddos capturing a picture of the displayed
dominos from the lesson
We are working on the addition strategy of making 10 right now. 2 days ago we had the manipulatives and 10 frames out to help us visually explore this concept but today, we were given just a projected domino and expected to talk it through. It was still too soon for my kiddos to make the jump to the abstract but in order to move them forward a little bit more, we brought in the iPads so everyone could be actively engaged and take part in the lesson. There's no room for just sitting and daydreaming on a day like today. LOL 

For each displayed domino, I had the kiddos take a picture and import it into DoodlecastPro (Yup, another must-have app!!) Once they were in DoodlecastPro (read more about it here)  they had to write the addition problem that the domino represented. The also had to be able to explain which strategy they used to find the sum (count on, make ten, etc) 
Student representation of the make 10 strategy
I love the way this student circled the extra dots from the 5 and put an arrow to the other side to create 10. It was a great way for this child to move a little closer to the abstract understanding of the Make 10 strategy.
For the 1st two dominos, kiddos took the pics, wrote the problem and it's turn-around fact and then turned and talked to a neighbor about their strategy usage. For the last problem, they followed the same format, but had to go and record their strategy usage on the iPad. 
The first 2 tries gave everyone practice in talking through their strategy use, helped strugglers to hear it from a peer and hopefully helped them to take another baby step toward the abstract. I'll upload a finished Doodlecast tomorrow so you can hear how the kiddos described their strategy usage. It was awesome to hear in their own words what they did.

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