Session 586: Moving Beyond the Right Answer: Developing Students’ Math Communication Skills

  • Friday, April 19, 2013
  • 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM
  • Suzanne Alejandre, Erin Igo, and Beth Nickle
  • The Math Forum's rubric emphasizes a combination of good problem solving and strong mathematical communication. We score in six areas, including interpretation, strategy, accuracy, completeness, clarity, and reflection. We'll share stories from online and classroom exchanges of our efforts to help students develop mathematical communication skills.


  • Introductions
  • A Little Background
  • Phase 1: Building Routines
  • How do I “teach” students the Practices?
  • Routines
    •       oral communication
    •       TurnAndTalk
    •       develop written communication
  • I feel like I am still learning what it all really means....
  • Phase 2: Building Environment
    •       introduce rubric
    •       individual conferences
    •       build from students' understanding
  • I want them to interact with each other more.
  • Let's Do Math
    •       Ostrich Llama Count-Examining Solutions Methods
    •       work in groups
    •       debrief activity
  • Phase 3: Giving Space
    •       encouraging students to take ownership
    •       students take on the task
    •       students build their perseverance
    •       conversations beyond the answer
  • Next time I would structure it into smaller chucks to make it more manageable...
  • Phase 4: Intrinsic Needs
    •       need feedback - requests
    •       extensions
    •       asking for more
    •       making connections
    •       controlling their own learning
    •       able to stop asking how to figure something out because they have comforable tools
  • The Ultimate
    •       working on problem solving when it hasn't been assigned
    •       learning because they decide to learn
  • Students' Voices
    •       mental
    •       verbal
    •       written




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The Math Forum is a research and educational enterprise of the Drexel University School of Education.The Math Forum is a research and educational enterprise of the Drexel University School of Education.