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Main Curriculum Tie:
Background For Teachers:
Intended Learning Outcomes:
Pass out a cup of beans and the worksheet Balance the Beans to each student. Draw a picture of the scale and the shapes on the chalkboard. Explain to the students that they can balance the scale by placing beans in the square, circle, and the triangle. Display the following rules on the chalkboard or on chart paper and then discuss them.
Instruct the students to balance 12 beans. Now try and balance it with 15 beans, and finally have them balance 18 beans. Record in their math journal what they have learned from this experience.
Walters, L. S., (2000). Putting Cooperative Learning to the Test. Harvard Education Letter. May/June 2000. (1-6)
Cooperative learning in the classroom has a strong research base in which teachers are moving away from the traditional teaching methods, rearranging their students into groups where they are encouraged to talk and share ideas as they shift to accommodate more teamwork within the classroom. Two essential components need to exist for cooperative learning to lead to significant gains in achievement. The first key component promotes interdependence with groups -- fostering the perception that students must work together to accomplish the goal. The second key component is to hold students individually accountable for demonstrating their understanding of the material. Students cannot “hitchhike” within the group.
Lacampagne, Carole, B. (1993). State of the Art: Transforming Ideas for Teaching and Learning Mathematics. Office of Educational Research and Improvement, July 1993. (1-14)
This research covers some fundamental shifts for the teaching and learning of mathematics. For teachers, administrators, and parents, it presents ten ideas for transforming mathematical teaching. A major focus is that all students can and must learn mathematics. Mathematics is not linear and hierarchical teaching rote skills first followed by problems solving later; but builds on that students learn best when they are intellectually challenged so that they are motivated to fill in mathematical gaps when necessary. Teachers need to provide stimulating problems and an environment to motivate mathematical learning.
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