Sunday, September 21, 2008

Numeracy Education Day

On Friday we had our Numeracy Education Day. Students were organised into mixed-aged groups for a series of activities moving from one classroom to another. Teachers prepared a 50-minute lesson that they presented 3 times during the day - two before lunch, and one after recess. This ran similarly to the Literacy Education Day we had for Book Week.

Teachers selected math activities involving space, measurement, problem solving, and chance and data. The activities were predominately hands-on math tasks with students working in pairs or small groups. Those working with 2D shapes created pictures using tangrams or other shapes. Some students went out to measure distances in the playground using metre trundle wheels. Others created a spinning colour wheel using instructions and measurements in centimetres. One group tried to solve brain teasers like matchstick puzzles.

My group was subjected to another Circle Time! This time related to chance and data. The group consisted of children from Kindergarten to Grade 2. I organised it as follows:

Check in: Students said their name, their class, and then coloured in the appropriate square, above their classname, on a graph. We then discussed what we can determine from this graph. Which class had the most members in the group? Which had the least? etc.

Mixer: One student stood in the centre of the circle and said "I like [McDonalds]". All children who agreed with the statement changed places in the circle. The person in the centre had to try to find a spot, leaving someone else standing in the centre. The game continued until everyone was mixed up.

Activity: The Car Race - I made another graph with numbers 1-12 along the bottom and some cute little pictures I found of cars. Students then worked in pairs to roll the dice and add the two numbers together. They then coloured in the squares above this number. The 'winning car' was the first one to reach the top of the graph (where I had some cute little pictures of checkered flags!) Before beginning, I got the children to choose which car they thought would win the race.

Debrief: We went around the circle and each group told me which car won their race, and how many spaces car number one moved. We then discussed why car number one didn't get to move at all. (It is impossible to roll 1 using two dice!) We then looked at the chances of rolling the other numbers, paying particular attention to the "winning car" numbers.

Energiser: I found a toss-a-coin tool on my Smart Board, but could have settled with an 'actual' coin! We then played a game of Heads and Tails. Students put their hands on their heads if they thought the coin would come up heads, or on their tails if they thought it would come up tails. Students who got it right stayed in for the next round. Play continued until one player was left and declared winner.

Check out: Students checked out by saying their name and one thing they had learnt about Maths through this activity.

I was really satisfied with how well these activities flowed and the discussion that arose as students explored chance through the roll of dice.

For more information about circle time, click here, or search this blog for 'circle time'.

No comments:

Post a Comment

I'd love to hear your thoughts and questions. Please don't be shy...