Math - Greater than, less than words

Discussion in 'First Grade' started by Memom2, Aug 30, 2010.

  1. Memom2

    Memom2 Rookie

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    Aug 30, 2010

    I am student teaching in first grade (and LOVE it!). Last week my CT introduced greater than, less than, and equal to and the kids did great. Today I tried to teach the same concept, but this time they had to circle the actual words instead of the symbols and they were completely lost. At the beginning of the lesson, I showed them cards that had the symbol and the words written on them and hung the cards of the board. I told the students that if they were stuck just to look on the board for help. Next, we did the first problem together referencing the cards. Finally, when I turned them loose to do the next problem on their own half the hands went up for help and the other half just circled something to be done. Any suggestions for helping them make the connection between the symbols and the words. They have to circle the words on the test.
     
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  3. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Aug 30, 2010

    It seems that the kids are having difficulty with the reading, not the concept. Your kids are beginning first graders and that means they are beginning readers- many of them may not be able to make the math symbol and word connection because they are still working on letter symbol/sound connection. I think you should cycle back periodically, using the words and symbols interchangeably....they'll get it when they are ready.
     
  4. Lynnnn725

    Lynnnn725 Connoisseur

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    Aug 30, 2010

    Is this a teacher made test, or a district/state thing?
     
  5. Memom2

    Memom2 Rookie

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    Aug 30, 2010

    It is just straight from the book. The county pacing guide sets the lessons. I tested them in reading and some of them are very behind. Unfortunately, the county sets the test as well and this will be on their test in a few weeks. At least now I know that my instincts were correct in that it is probably just their reading level. Thank you.
     
  6. Lysander

    Lysander Companion

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    Sep 2, 2010

    Since reading the whole word is an issue, focus on the initial consonant. If they know it's Greater than, they can circle the one with the G. Perhaps even make greater than and less than signs in Green (greater than symbol and letter G written in green), and Lavender (sorry...didn't know another L color). Even if they can't read, they can still be taught "test tricks" that will help them more often than not. It's not a cure, but it fixes the symptom till they do learn to read.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2010
  7. Lynnnn725

    Lynnnn725 Connoisseur

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    Sep 3, 2010

    When is the test?
    We spend a few weeks teaching this concept. Maybe not all of them actually understand the concept after just one lesson. Maybe teach the concept and not have a recording sheet - just verbally and with manipulatives they are grabbing a two handfuls and seeing which one has more or less. Observe and take notes of who understands. Then you can pull small groups and start from where they are - those who are ready for symbols and words - great - teach them. Those who are still trying to understand the concept - work with them on that.
    Of course I don't know if your curriculum allows time for differentiation and checking for understanding and reteaching... but I hope it does!
     
  8. dcnuck

    dcnuck Companion

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    Sep 3, 2010

    I don't know if this will help but the way I always remember which symbol was which is less than has an the letter 'l' in it and points to the left===greater than has an r in the word and it points to the right:)
     
  9. Memom2

    Memom2 Rookie

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    Sep 3, 2010

    Thank you all so much for the suggestions! The curriculum is crazy! We were allowed 2 days for this topic and we have now moved on to graphing. The teacher told me that the topic will be revisited in later lessons. The test is at the end of the 9 week grading period. I do not understand how everything fits right now. I hate moving on knowing they did not understand.
     
  10. UVAgrl928

    UVAgrl928 Habitué

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    Sep 4, 2010

    Instead of just being a reading problem, this to me would seem that they don't really understand what greater or less than mean. They learned the symbols (probably by your cooperating teacher doing the alligator or some other little picture), and that's all they remember (not the actual skill). Are they able to "read" the symbol (ie. < they say "less than"), or just identify which symbol is correct?
     
  11. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Sep 6, 2010

    I was also thinking of the "greater gator" idea
     

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