Saturday, June 13, 2015

#70 Days Intro to Teaching Numeracy

So, this first week off has been both a whirlwind of activity and a period of rest.

My husband and I went out to a movie, went to hear live music at one of the local Austin scenes, and took in a day trip to a nearby town celebrating the lavender farms.  We've had fun in this mini-staycation!

I took the grandsons one morning to a local park that features a splash pad, a play ground, a sand box, and more.  They ran from one activity to the next while I soaked up the sun and enjoyed their antics.

I finished reading one novel and started another.  If you like sentimental stories, with interesting characters, stories of relationships, love, and redemption, then I can recommend novels by Charles Martin.  I just finished Unwritten and I loved it!  The author wrote this teaser on his blog before Unwritten was published:

-- Of the six million species on the planet, only man makes language. Words. What’s more—in evidence of the Divine—we string these symbols together and then write them down where they take on a life of their own and breathe outside of us. Story is the bandage of the broken. Sutures of the shattered. The tapestry upon which we write our lives. ...  Critics cry foul, claiming the tongue is a bloody butcher that blasphemes, slices, slanders, and damns—leaving scars, carnage, the broken and the beaten. Admittedly, story is a double-edged scimitar, but the fault lies not in the word but in the hand that wields the pen. 

I've been reading blogs, lurking on Twitter, and reading bits and pieces from the books I've selected for summer PD.  

I started delving into Teaching Numeracy: 9 Critical Habits to Ignite Mathematical Thinking this week.  The introduction caught my attention because I spent a chunk of my career in elementary school.  There, much attention is given to teaching reading strategies to students like fix up strategies, thinking strategies, making connections and more.  Authors Pearse and Walton take those ideas and apply them to math.

Yes, the book is written primarily for K-8 teachers.  But strategies can often be applied to a wide range of audiences and I want to make connections from the book to my high school class!

The authors share an idea from Richard Allington, well known for his work in reading comprehension, saying "we need to teach students to read beyond their math textbooks and start thinking like mathematicians.  Students must have inner conversations with the text and listen to that voice in their heads speaking as they [work]; it allows them to construct meaning."  Yes! and Yes!

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