For my second lesson, I decided to conduct a math lesson as I had never conducted a math lesson in an elementary classroom let alone a 3rd grade classroom. I discussed with my CT what math concept I could teach that pertained to one of the 3rd grade standards. My CT told me that I could introduce the new concept of area to the class on the Friday that I was supposed to teach my lesson. I knew that that introducing a new topic on a Friday in an elementary classroom was not ideal as the majority of teachers that I have observed in the past usually wrap up their week’s lessons on Friday. The Friday I was conducting my lesson was also a shorten day due to Fall Break, so I thought the students would show some off task behavior for the early release day. These circumstances made me think hard about how I was going to introduce the concept of area to the students in an effective way. I knew that I needed to have a lesson that included an exploratory hands- on activity to keep the students engaged and wanting to learn. Therefore, I decided to use cheese crackers as manipulatives to represent square units. The students were to first guess what the area of the different shapes in a worksheet packet were and then they were to use the crackers to figure out the actually area of the different shapes. I had been grading the students’ weekly math quizzes that pertained to arrays and multiplication a couple of weeks prior to my lesson which helped me presses the students’ knowledge on

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For my Field Experience I chose to observe at Krahn Elementary which is a part of Klein Independent School District. After my approval, I was assigned to four teachers and their classrooms. I observed at Krahn Elementary on six Tuesdays between 15 September 2015 and 27 October 2015, and more or less followed the schedule that was given to me by the Assistant Principal Ms. Shannon Strole. From 8:30 am to 9:15 am I observed Ms. Judy Burkes, who is a third grade Math and Science teacher. Her classroom is comprised of twenty students which range from average to below average learners and a student with ADHD and another with autism. For most part of my observation, M. Burkes had been working with her students on fractions and multiple digits addition and subtraction. From 9:15 am to 10:30 am I observed Ms. Lisa Parker who is a Math co-teacher and resource teacher at Krahn Elementary for grades K-5. During my assigned time, Ms. Parker usually joined Mr. Duru’s fifth grade class of twenty three students as a co-teacher and when required would pull out a group of six students after initial instructions from Mr. Duru and would teach them the concepts separately at a slower pace. This particular group of students with special needs was mostly seen to be focusing more and more on mathematical word problems. These students were students with Learning disabilities, behavioral issues and one of them was a student with ADHD. From 10:30 am to 11:15, I was with Ms. Janice Bluhms, who is a

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Student B demonstrates mathematical strengths in the explanation of both solutions of the area and perimeter, although one of the formula used was incorrect. Mathematical strength was also displayed in the actual multiplication 5x2x5x2=100, and addition 5+2+5+2=14 cm, failing to include the units of measurement

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Teachers play an important role in fostering mathematics skills. In the “play dough” (Appendix A) episode, the educators can push student thinking and place the burden of thought on the student. Strategic questioning can really promote higher order thinking a natural integration between math and play (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics [NCTM], 1999). Questions such as “How can you tell which one is the biggest/smallest? How do you put them in order? Teachers should be encouraged to think about, not only the questions they are asking as children are working but also the frame that sets students off to larger problem solving and mathematical discoveries – measure and compare the lengths and capacities (ACARA, 2016). It is important for teachers to think about the questions that are embedded in the task itself but must also analyse the questions to ensure that children are set on a path to deeper understanding of the concept being taught rather than rote regurgitation – as evident in the play dough experience chosen. When it comes to questioning, educators “need to know when to probe, when to wait for answers and when to reinforce responses and when not ta ask questions” (NCTM, 1999, p.187). As seen in the ‘play dough’ (Appendix A) activity chosen, educators can introduce the mathematical concept of measurement and connect new knowledge with old through the use of effective questioning which crates a “link between actions and the language” (Knaus, 2013,

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Simulation results will always equal analytical results if 30 trials of the simulation have been conducted.

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This allows the student to become increasingly engaged and motivated in the class. Peter is engaged during peer discussion and classroom discussion. Peter is not a ‘leader’ among the group; however, he did participate to complete a multiplication problem in front of the class. During this volunteer time, Peter was aided by his peer, Michael to further his understanding of repeated addition. It has also been discovered throughout the school year that Peter is a hands on learner; the manipulatives present in the lesson keep Peter more engaged and increase his learning outcomes. Peter was able to complete the multiplication problem 10x3 on the board using the area model format; this displays that Peter understands the method of breaking numbers into equal groups.

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Math manipulatives can have a positive effect on the learning experience of a child. These manipulatives can help students maintain focus and develop a stronger overall understanding of mathematics (Florence). Students respond well to the addition of hands-on activities versus a strictly traditional lecture method of learning. The sense of touch and handling of objects kinesthetically kindles the interest and imagination of the students and assists in building understanding and beyond drill and stimulus-response method used.

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