Friday, March 3, 2017

Peer Inspiration {Slice of Life Story Challenge}

Working a few feet away with a group of students I overhear a powerful conversation happening with another group of students and a parent volunteer.  They are trying to find all the possible ways to make 25 cents.  Our parent volunteer suggests using different amounts of pennies with other coins.  I wish I had my notebook out to collect little snippets to share the precise language here.  When we come together I have this group share the tip they learned with the whole class and we move to different work areas in the room.  This next group exploring how many ways to make 25cents was super involved with the tasks.  Their conversations were a flurry of math thinking.  I overheard phrases like; I found, I switched, I tried, How about, Try this many more, What about...  This burst of energy didn't happen because an adult was there guiding their work or leading the conversation.  It happened because students could share their thinking and be inspired by their peers.  Something worth pondering.  

   Thank you Two Writing Teachers for hosting this Slice of Life Story Challenge.


  1. You have obviously taught them the language to talk about their thinking, Mandy. Dialogue can only happen when our students have words to explain what they do. This kind of talk is magic. Don't you wish you had a video going on during these golden moments?

  2. Students are powerful thinkers and learners when we give them the space they need. I love this snapshot of a math problem and solution.

  3. The buzz of learning, absolutely perfect!