17 June 2014

Exploring the Daily 5 - Chapter 8

The Math Daily 3

"The essence of mathematics is not to make simple things complicated but to make complicated things simple." Stanley Gudder (p.121)

Having seen the success of the Daily 5 in literacy, the authors began using the 10 Steps to Teaching and Learning Independence in other curriculum areas. The next step was to apply the same principles of providing appropriate independent practise for students and opportunities for the teacher to work with individuals and small groups needing extra support, to mathematics. There was also a desire to provide students with activities that would lead to deeper understanding and problem solving. After refining the framework over time, what is presented in this chapter is the Math Daily 3:

  • Math by Myself
  • Math Writing
  • Math with Someone.

The activities for Math by Myself and Math with Someone provide practice on both current and recently completed units. Math Writing allows students to express their thinking and understanding through problem solving and problem writing.

Math Daily 3 Structure
As you would expect, Math Daily 3 uses a similar structure to the Daily 5, with short 7-10 minute focus lessons broken up by independent work time. The whole group lessons come from the school's math program, so Math Daily 3 can work whatever the program. With three focus lessons, the suggestion is the first lesson teaches the concept (I show), the next lesson is guided practice (we do), and the third lesson is problem solving related to the concept.

Math Daily 3 Overview
This section provides a sample lesson plan using the Daily 3. It helps me understand how I could break my lessons down into brain-friendly chunks for my students. It will definitely work with Go Maths.

What Do You Need to Begin Math Daily 3
While it is suggested that the Math gatherings take place in a different location to Literacy, that's not going to happen in my classroom. I simply don't have enough space. Another challenge is going to be wall space, but that can be overcome. One of the things I noted was that Math Daily 3 requires lots of materials such as manipulatives, dice, game boards, small whiteboards, etc. I'm sure I'll get creative as I find and organise these things. Specific suggestions for organising the various materials are provided, but it's really a matter of exploring options and finding out what works for me and my students.

Teaching the Foundation Lessons of Math Daily 3
This is a reminder of the Foundation Lessons from the Daily 5. One very important lesson, especially for Math with Someone and Math by Myself, is setting up and cleaning up materials.

Launching Math by Myself
Each Math by Myself activity will need to be taught as a focus lesson. This section gives a step-by-step demonstration of the 10 Steps as they apply to mathematics.

Teaching the Foundation Lessons: Math Writing
Math Writing is going to require some planning for me to implement. It is about students expressing their thinking and understanding using words, numbers and pictures. I need to clarify my thinking on this part of the program before I launch it.

Launching Math Writing
Again, the launch process involves creating an I-chart and this section provides details on the core behaviours and timing as well as introducing choice.

Launching Math With Someone
The foundation lesson, "How to Choose a Partner" is essential for Math with Someone. Each activity will also need to be taught. I already have a great source of activities for this options with the Go Maths Book of Facts and Fundamentals books. Once stamina is guilt, along with a variety of activities, choice can be extended to include Math With Someone.

The concluding paragraph highlights how students have experienced increased success in mathematics through tailored instruction and independent practice.

Some personal reflection
I'm thinking that I won't try to implement Math Daily 5 straight away, and maybe not even this year, until I get my head around using the Daily 5 and how I can make that work in my classroom. This isn't because I don't think it will work, I think it will, but rather because I know my limits when it comes to change. Introducing Daily 5 is going to make some pretty substantial changes in my classroom next year, and I need to be realistic about how much change I can cope with without overloading myself.

For more of my reflections on "The Daily 5", check out these posts
Chapter 1: That Was Then, This is Now: How the Daily 5 Evolved.
Chapter 2: Our Core Beliefs: The Foundations of the Daily 5
Chapter 3: The 10 Steps to Teaching and Learning Independence
Chapter 4: What do you need to begin?
Chapter 5: Launching Read to Self - The First Daily 5
Chapter 6: Foundation Lessons

Chapter 7: When to Launch the Next Daily 5

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