Everyday is new and different when you work with children. Each day is filled with a series of exciting moments. I love this time of year in the classroom. Fourth graders are more independent and inquisitive than ever. What I really love is the personality. They bring such great energy and pizzazz to everything they do.
In this blog, I'd like to share some examples of student work that show how the Common Core standards are enabling our students to go deeper in their thinking about math. It is hard to quantify all the ways education has changed since the Common Core standards were adopted in MA. To sum it up the best way I can, I will say that our students are engaged in THINKING deeply about math every day. Unlike my own elementary mathematics education where following prescribed steps and memorization were emphasized, today students are engaged in problem analysis and developing solutions that make sense. A deep understanding of our number system is emphasized in classrooms where collaboration and student lead conversation help students to grow their thinking. Their understanding of math is so much deeper than my understanding was at their age. Exciting stuff. Recently, I posed the below problem and the students in my class responded in many different ways. Although each looks different, each was able to do the following:
Teaching has been my superpower for 21 years!