Writing in math

Discussion in 'Middle School / Junior High' started by mathrulz, Sep 1, 2012.

  1. mathrulz

    mathrulz Rookie

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    Sep 1, 2012

    Last year a fellow teacher and myself got inspired to have our students write more in math. We included a written response question on every test that required them to write a paragraph or more. This was a learning experience as we are not English teachers, but, in the end, the students grew in their writing and we will be repeating this again (with some tweaks to how we go about implementation) this year.

    I would love to hear how others are incorporating any kind of writing within their math class.
     
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  3. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    Sep 1, 2012

    Great move, mathrulz!
     
  4. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Sep 2, 2012

    I have a problem of the week. The students solve the problem, write out their process, and then explain their process. It covers writing, speaking, and listening. The students also can become critics of other methods.
     
  5. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    Sep 2, 2012

    My husband starts his math and science classes with a problem or question of the day. The solve the problem, then must explain how they got their answer. Sometimes it's a physics thing, and they must explain what would happen if one thing changed. They must submit them immediately on the computer. It helps him know who's totally lost.
     
  6. roxstar

    roxstar Companion

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    Sep 18, 2012

    Mopar, I have wanted to do a problem of the week for a long time now, I just can't seem to figure out how to work it in. Time etc. What is your procedure for this. Just curious.
     
  7. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Sep 18, 2012

    I had my students complete "Real Life Math" journals. They had to write a paragraph or two describing how whatever topic we're studying in class pertains to real life.

    I also occasionally had them write math fairy tales. They had to incorporate the vocabulary of whatever unit we were studying into a fairy tale of sorts. I read them one of the "Sir Cumference" books to give them an idea of what I was going after. That was always a favorite activity.
     
  8. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Sep 18, 2012

    I do weekly problem solving...students show their thinking using words, pictures and numbers.
     
  9. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Sep 18, 2012

    Mine is very informal. I'm always pausing to let my kids "write yourselves a note" explaining the step(s) we've just completed.
     
  10. Poodle15

    Poodle15 Companion

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    Sep 18, 2012

    I am in college taking Foundations of Math for Elementary School Teachers. We have a math journal and our teacher hands out Journal Prompts for each chapter that pertain to all kinds of topics.

    Ch 1 examples are:
    -our personal history with math (grades, which types of classes we've had and like best);
    -a review of the "jigsaw" problem we did in groups including which problem we did and how we used the problem solving strategy recommended to solve it as well as a general opinion on group work;
    -how the Common Core will affect us and how we teach;
    -Explaining, problem solving with, and creating Venn Diagrams (covered in the text);
    -the difference between inductive and deductive reasoning and an example of how we have used it in our every day life (used in the text);
    -truth values; solving a word problem using truth values and explaining how/why we got our answer (covered in the text);

    While you most likely won't use these topics :lol:, they're a good indication of how our math journals cover topics from what we're learning in class as well as real life topics that require math.
     
  11. Poodle15

    Poodle15 Companion

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    Sep 18, 2012

    I also should mention that she collects journals on Wednesdays and hands them back on Fridays. We can do whichever prompts we like throughout the semester and the total number of points we can get on our journals (85) surpasses the full total of all the prompts given to us (150). So we have a week at a time to do some writing. I should also mention that the "regular" homework she gives is definitely minimal, relatively speaking.
     
  12. Iheartmath

    Iheartmath Rookie

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    Oct 30, 2012

    This year, I try to give students several prolems per week that are called..."Find the Error." The students have 3-5 on a sheet that I've done incorrectly. They need to correct the mistake and write several sentences that explain what was done wrong.

    I usually put 1 of these on each quiz and test. The mistakes I have them fix are common errors I've seen over the years.

    Hope this idea helps you!
     
  13. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Oct 30, 2012

    I love that! We are learning to sequence and yesterday we sequenced our night routine in our journals using those terms. So, they wrote 3 sentences which was great because Mondays we have an hour-long assembly and limited writing time.
     

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