takeaway from yesterday

Posted on August 29, 2013

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No conclusions, but evidence making me consider:   OMGGG (Oh, my goodness gracious gosh ;))  these students want to succeed, and these ladies *weren’t* just trying to get the problems done; they were trying to understand.  

Two:   Yes, I *need* to figure out how to make the practice.   (Well, that’s a conclusion.   Gobs of evidence for it, including my guy who could get subtracting integers *if* I asked while drawing a number line in the air. If he had practice with visual scaffolding, he’d *have* it in 20 minutes, and then just need that increased space between practice stuff interspersed with the “and just why is that so?” for the verbal gerbils and “draw me a picture to show why” for the folks like him.)

Three:  there’s a *wide* range of backgrounds of folks plopping into the “low low low assessment test score” group, from “I didn’t take any more math than I had to, and that was 10 years ago!”   to “I passed math ’til I got to trig” (but, she said, could never “show her work,” because she didn’t know how she got it — and I suspect she’s not the intuitive thinking type that struggles to verbalize, but that she managed to get enough right to pass doing the wrong stuff, with those weird compensating skills). 

And finally, I am hoping that yes, we will do lots better than the previous permutations of the course, wherein they practiced procedures ’til blue in face, plowing through too quickly to spend any time on concepts because there just “wasn’t time.” 

Oh, and duly noting that I should remember to use small numbers, unless and until that becomes a barrier.   Sometimes when the numbers are easy they intuit the answers and don’t bother to figure out why, but I haven’t seen it happen.   

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