Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Let's Talk Math!!

Hi all!! 

One of my favorite subjects in kindergarten is Math!!  It always amazes me how little minds work.  Does any one else feel this way?  Little ones can solve problems in so many ways and sometimes I have no idea how they arrived at the conclusions that they did, but they are spot on!! 

So, today let's talk math!! (Just so ya all know, I'd do this with any grade level.  I'm just sharing from a kindergarten perspective!)

In my classroom each day we spend part of our day introducing and reviewing common core concepts using my Kindergarten Daily Math units.  We also spend part of our day doing an activity called "Math Talk".  I've talked about "Math Talk" before, but thought I'd share a little bit about it again, since it is a quick and easy way to tie in some of the standards each day in your classroom!

Basically "Math Talk" is a conversation about a picture.  The little ones are using math language during our conversations (after much modeling) and sometimes we even incorporate our comprehension strategies into our discussions.   We always begin our conversations talking about what they notice in the pictures.  Many times the little people are able to infer something about what they think is going on in the picture by clues and it is so neat to see how their thinking changes as they gain more information from their classmates (synthesizing).

One of the standards for kindergarten is to describe objects in the environment using names of shapes, and describe the relative positions of these objects using terms such as above, below, beside, in front of, behind, and next to.  Using our pictures for "Math Talk" helps us tie this standard into our math time.  Another nice thing about using pictures is, it also helps children begin to see things in groups, and not just by 1's.  Each little person is joining the conversation where they are in their thinking/learning.  They are also having the opportunity to learn from their peers' thinking which pushes them just a little bit further. 

At the end of math talk, I give the little people some problems to solve using things within the pictures.  They can solve the problem in any way they wish.  Some will count on, some will add, some will subtract.  It is so neat to see how they're thinking. 

I thought maybe you would like to see what one of our pictures might look like.  I decided to include 2.  It doesn't have to be anything fancy, it could just be a picture you took on vacation, at a holiday gathering, etc.  These just happen to be of my little grandson on a trip to the apple orchard last fall.  The important piece is the conversation!!!   Happy talking! 

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