4/16–Working on percents and as anticipated, students wanted to calculate sales price simply by multiplying the original by the % discount. After a little exploration, they recognized the flaw in their logic. I presented them with the bottom equation and argued that it was true. Their initial response was that it couldn’t possibly be…after all, none of the others were.  It was much more challenging than expected for them to work through why this was true for 50%, and then why it’s only true for 50%.

4/17 No picture today–but I did overhear some great comments as 6th graders entered math workshop straight from PE.

  • I wonder how many calories I burned today?
  • Well, I’m bigger so I burned more.
  • Yeah, but not as many as LeBron James!
  • How long is PE?
  • Does the cafeteria know how many calories in today’s lunch?
  • Did basketball burn more calories per pound than soccer? That’s what we played last time.
  • Wait, let me grab a calculator!

Last week’s New-Tritional Info lesson obviously made an impact!  Thanks Mathalicious!!

4/22–We started looking at dividing fractions using rectangles today. The visual makes it so much easier to analyze mistakes.

4/23  Spotted this strategy for multiplying decimals today.  “Well, I know how to triple the dollars and to triple the cents better separately and I know my answer has to be in dollars and cents.  That way I won’t need to deal with the decimal stuff.” This student did have to pause a while to determine how he’d record the 282 cents.  His initial instinct was $57.282 and round to $57.28, but he immediately erased it.  “That can’t be right because 282 cents is more than 2 dollars.  Okay,so now I have to pay attention to the decimal part.”


4/24  Doing some shopping and calculating discounts and sales tax–thanks to Fawn Nguyen and her fabulous lesson!


4/28  Figuring out how to fix Nana’s Paint Mixup today–one of Dan Meyer’s 3ACTS.


4/30  Still working on percents… and they really want to use the % button on their calculators.  One student’s guess and check strategy provided a great conversation starter. If you can’t remember exactly how to find the percent of a number, which of these is the most reasonable answer and how do you know?


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