This morning, the boys and girls had to solve the problem pictured below. They were given a variety of manipulatives and had to work with their elbow partner to find a solution.
After reviewing the five steps to problem solving, off they went!
After l lunch, we moved on to our Literacy Block, where we talked about inferring. We've been talking about this for a few days now. Inferring is like being a detective. You have to read between the lines to understand the message. This can be a hard concept to teach, so photos help a lot. We looked at the photo below this week and I asked the class, "What do you infer about how this child feels about dinner?"
Students use the clues in the photo, along with their own prior knowledge to infer that he likely doesn't like vegetables.
Then we moved on to my favorite part! I showed the class this little gift. I asked them to infer what might be inside. They figured it was a gift of sorts and that it was in pieces based on the noise it made. But that was about it. Without more information (see where I'm going here?) it's hard to infer.
Slowly, but surely, the more information I gave the kids, the more they could infer. The key take-away from this was just that: the more prior knowledge we bring to a text, the better we can infer. This is why it's essential to activate that prior knowledge before we read a text.
The best and funniest part of all this was when the kids did finally figure out that it was an apple peeler in the box, I told them we were going to make applesauce on Friday as part of Fun Friday. Well, they thought that was just grand. But punch-line came when I announced that thanks to them solving that Math problem in the morning, I now knew how many apples I needed to buy! Whomp-whomp!