Building Mathematical Comprehension - Chapter #9

Happy Tuesday!

I really had planned for this post to be ready for you all this morning, but life got in the way!  11 days until baby's due date and I am moving slowly - but life is moving at warp speed!  Spent the day in my classroom - getting things ready for the kiddos I won't meet until December!  

This week's chapter was all about monitoring comprehension in math.  Whether or not you choose to teach all of the strategies in math, I feel like this is one strategy that kids NEED to have.  Students need to be able to figure out what they know and what they don't know - what they don't understand and how they can fix that misunderstanding.  

This chapter listed some signs that students should pay attention to when trying to decide if they understand the concepts at hand...
-  Your internal voice is not interacting mathematically with the concept or problem.
-  You are unable to visualize the mathematical concept or problem.
-  Your mind wanders away from the mathematical work at hand.
-  You are unable to recall the details of a math idea or problem.  
-  You cannot find answers to the questions asked to clarify meaning.  

Then, once they have decided that they do not understand students should be aware of some fix-up strategies that they can use to gain understanding.  

Some of these fix-up strategies mentioned are:
-  think about my mathematical purpose
-  identify and unfamiliar vocabulary
-  reread the mathematical text or problem
-  look for text features or text structure to give any clues
-  ask questions
-  connect to other known mathematical concepts
-  relate to personal experiences
-  visualize the problem
-  draw a diagram to represent the problem
-  use manipulatives
-  restate it in your own words
-  think of a similar problem
-  try a different problem solving approach
-  talk with another student
-  ask someone for help

Hopefully these ideas gave you some things to think about adding into you math teaching this year -  We have one more week left and during that post we will be talking about how all of this mathematical strategy teaching fits into our Guided Math programs!

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