Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Divide and Conquer!

We have spent MANY days working on division strategies and problem solving. We then took a 2 week break, and it almost felt like we were starting back over! I was up for the challenge, and I wanted to make a difference!


This year, I have been challenging myself to "gamify" more of my lessons.  My students, and I'm sure many other students, truly respond to lessons when they are turned into a game.  On Monday afternoon I began to research ways to make problem solving more engaging and meaningful, and I came across a blog post from Karla Baldonado (Life and Pancakes).  In this post titled, "Make Math Fun: Word Problem Scavenger Hunt", she spoke of using a collaborative game to motivate and excite them!  I love collaboration, and use it as often as possible.  As she says in her post, "If you're a teacher, whether in a regular classroom or if you homeschool, there is true value in interaction." Although I loved her lesson, I changed it a bit to better serve my students.  I also included some Duck Dynasty Questions!  You heard me right-Duck Dynasty!  Most of my kids are huge fans of the show, and when I found these task cards on TpT, I knew I had to have them!

I gave each table group a set of 6 cards, but realized pretty quick that my students could've handled a couple more.  They were asked to work as a table to solve each problem, one at a time.  For every correct answer, they received a letter.  I LOVED hearing the students talk through the problems as a table.  I really LOVED watching them work together to solve the problem.  I really, really LOVED witnessing students teach their friends how to use a division strategy. Music to my ears!  

There were 24 letters to pass out; 6 letters per table.  At the end of the game, we added all 24 letters to our SMART Board. The students had to unscramble the letters to form a sentence, or in this case, a question!  I drew out some blanks (like Hangman), and the students started to work as an entire class to solve the mystery phrase.  This part was a ton of fun!!  I wish I would have taken a video of them!  The mystery phrase was:


Today was a fun one!!  We will be working with interpreting remainders tomorrow...and brownies!!