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Showing posts from February, 2014

Workin' On It Wednesday 2/26

Workin' On It Wednesday We've been working on fractions quite a bit, and have been working on division this week. During the summer, I read the book Minds on Mathematics: Using Math Workshop to Develop Deep Understanding in Grades 4-8 by Wendy Ward Hoffer, and planned to spend more time this year having students "struggle" with problems that required them to think and explore. However, I haven't done as much of this as I had planned.  As we were ready to start fraction division, though, I decided to present students with a problem to solve, to see if they could make sense of the situation without knowing the mathematical process for dividing fractions. Based on their pre-tests, most of my students did not know this process when we started the fraction operations unit, so I knew this problem would be a struggle for many. I presented my students with this question and allowed them to work with a partner or two to find a solution: Sharon has 34 ½ inches

Reviewing Fraction Operations

After the snow days, delays, and various missed classes, I wanted students to do some practice with adding, subtracting, and multiplying fractions before we moved on to division. We spent part of a class period using our decks of fraction cards to do this. I told students they could practice whichever operation they felt they needed most, or they could alternate operations. They could start with two new cards for each problem or use their answer from a problem as part of the next problem - entirely up to them! They really love to use the whiteboards, so they scattered themselves around the room and got started. A few pair kept adding fraction after fraction after fraction...one pair commented that it was taking forever to get their sums to equal 1...a nice lead in to a short conversation about why that could happen:) Overall, classes did a great job with this, working well and helping each other out. I love to see students helping one another to understand, as is happening in

Workin' On It Wednesday #2

Welcome to Workin' On It Wednesday:)  I've created a button you may use if you'd like to join in with Workin' On It Wednesday on your own blog (button graphics, which I love, by Ashley Hughes: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Ashley-Hughes-38 ). You can copy the code below to get the button to your blog if you'd like.  Below,  you are welcome to link up a blog post, a freebie, or a paid product that you have been working on. <p> <b>Please include attribution to http://ellienix.blogspot.com/ with this graphic.</b><br /><br /><a href='http://ellienix.blogspot.com/2014/02/workin-on-it-wednesday.html'><img src='<a href="http://s298.photobucket.com/user/EllieNix/media/WOWbutton150.png.html" target="_blank"><img src="http://i298.photobucket.com/albums/mm257/EllieNix/WOWbutton150.png" border="0" alt="WOW Button.150 photo WOWbutton150.png"/>&

Workin' on it Wednesday!

Welcome to my first Workin' on it Wednesday Linky! Each Wednesday, I'd like to share what we've been working on in the classroom, or activities that we have tried with our students, or materials that we've made to help our students' learning. I would love to see blog posts linked up, but I am ok with freebies or paid products as well. I will attempt to make a button for this during the next week, but I don't have one made yet (it might take me awhile!)   My Workin' on it Wednesday is related to fraction division. We've been working on the fraction operations, and will start division on our next school day (whenever that may be, with the impending snow and Presidents' Day!)  After school I worked on creating a visual that shows models of division, to help students understand what dividing fractions and mixed numbers looks like and means; I also included examples to show how to divide fractions, using both the reciprocal method and the common denom

Multiplying Mixed Numbers

We've been working on adding, subtracting and multiplying mixed numbers, and with all the snow days and delays, instruction and practice have been chopped up. Students learned the process to multiply mixed numbers on Friday: change them to improper fractions, and then multiply the numerators and the denominators. Since we haven't spent much time on this yet, and because I know they often get confused when they move from adding and subtracting to multiplying (common denominator...no common denominator...what do I do??), I made them a fraction operations "note sheet" with the steps that need to be followed for each one. Click to download After reviewing the steps to multiply mixed numbers and practicing a few problems together, the students started practicing on their own (the review and practice together was quick since there was a two-hour delay today and the period was only 20 minutes long!). Most students were ok, but then I found one who decided to multiply t

300 Followers Giveaway at An Apple for the Teacher

Kelly over at An Apple for the Teacher is having a tremendous giveaway to celebrate 300 followers on her blog! There is one giveaway for K-2 and one for 3rd grade and up. Over 60 teacher-authors have donated products for this giveaway, and there are gift certificates included as well! Hope you have time to enter the drawings! Good luck! Check out this great giveaway!

Starting to Panic....a Little...

Before the Christmas break I was feeling so good about where I was in the math curriculum this year - farther ahead than any year in the recent past! Things were looking great for the amount of material I'd be able to cover before our state testing time. But NOW, after so many snow days and late starts, and 3 half-days next week for parent-teacher conferences, I'm starting to feel a bit worried! Part of me thinks, "We do as much as we can and that will have to be enough...I can't stuff it down their throats," and another part of me thinks "How much can I cram in ?!"  I never want to cram - students don't master concepts when they cram. So, although the panic is trying to attack me, I need to stick to my belief that student understanding comes first. Anyone else feeling this way?

Thanks to Jen and Lindy!

New logo! I keep trying to redo my logo for my TPT store, but I'm not the most creative :(    I decided to start with a font change yesterday, so thanks to Jen at Cupcakes-N-Curriculum for the JG Alphadot fon t I used in the logo on the right! When I fill out my Student of the Month certificates, I always write the info on the certificates in this style, so I thought it was perfect for me:) I am also loving the Scruffy Wavy frames by Lindy Du Plessis, so today I decided to use one for my logo, and then I went ahead and changed by colors too:) Old logo