Saturday, January 17, 2015
Number Talks With 100 Snowmen!
Hey Kinder Friends,
You know me. I am always on the hunt for a good book. My favorite books have always been math books. If it can be incorporated into any math discussion or discussion about numbers, I just have to have it. My books are carefully selected and planned and...treasured. A favorite book gets read more than once and I honestly hate thinking about putting a favorite book away and waiting until the next year to read it again. I am always trying to figure out new ways to extend the reading experience and make it an active engagement experience. One of my favorite ways to do that in math this year has been with number lines. I can't get enough of number lines this year.
When I saw the book 100 Snowmen I knew I had to have it. I wasn't sure how I was going to use it in the classroom but I knew I had to have it. Once it arrived, I realized that this is mainly a book about joining numbers 1-9. But what really caught my attention was that the last page all of the numbers were added together to get 100 snowmen. I knew that had to be a part of my discussion when reading this book. Although this was my intention, I wanted to read the book with the kids first and then plan for a more structured talk about it. When reading for the first time, we just read it though and we had a general discussion about the book. I used this time to just listen to what the kids are thinking and plan for the next reading.
When I read the book for the second time I like it to be an active engagement reading. With active engagement reading during math, I incorporate a familiar math tool.
For our second reading we used number lines and I paused throughout the book and they found the number on the number line. Throughout the reading, we went up and down the number line to 20. It was easy to see who was having difficulty and who was not. I also noticed most of the kids were confident in their movements and a few children were looking around to see if what they had was right. We put our number lines down at the last page and discussed the large quantity of 100 snowmen on the last page. As the children went to their math boxes, I just listened to the discussion and planned for the next discussion.
On the third reading we used our ipads and responded to the text. And out of curiosity the kids wanted to know how to create 100 with the rekenreks and one student was able to teach everyone including the new students. We talked about ten groups of ten and left our session at that. After listening and watching the kids during and after these sessions I was able to plan for my final reading of the book in the following days.
For the final reading, we focused on the last page and this framed our discussion or ...number talk.
What strategies can we use to help us count large quantities?
I pose the question and I listen to their responses and record their thinking.
We can touch each object.
We can touch and move each object.
We can line them up.
We can make groups.
We can use ten frames.
We can make pictures.
Our session this time without the book lasted about five minutes. Just five minutes. Not a big commitment. The sessions with the book readings took about fifteen minutes each.
Where do we go from here?
First, I never defined what "large quantities" were. I just wanted to know what their thinking was after seeing 100 snowman scattered on the page of different sizes and orientations. Honestly, at my first glace, when thinking about using this with kindergarten kids, it looked overwhelming. I imagine a table of scattered UNIFIX cubes looks the same way to a new kinder kid. So, in all reality, a large quantity could be 10, 20 or even 100 depending on each of us individually. Furthermore, a discussion about counting strategies is helpful to each and every one of my students including the two new students that collectively only have had four weeks of formal school when the rest of us have had a half of year of kindergarten and some a full year of prek before that. It's like the easiest differentiation...ever!
What are the next steps?
Everyone always asks...now what? Well, we could talk about strategies for accurate counting or even efficient counting strategies. I know we will have great talks about that. But listening to the kids I know right now they are interested in...story problems. Yep, snowy story problems! Which reminded me of these cute snowmen we made when we were dreaming of snow. If you want to check them out just click on the picture and it will take you there!
Thanks for stopping by. Have a great week!