Every Wednesday, I give a chance to my child to explore a word problem a way that makes sense to her. And every Wednesday, I share the word problem, and my experience with you, so you can do the same ! Click here if you want to start from the beginning ! Hope you join us !
Here comes Problem #2. I told you last week that I would start differentiated the problem into 3 levels of difficulties. Indeed, observing Rosie, my 7 year old daughter solving the T4F problems, I noticed that there was something quite special for her to pick the level on her own. Sometimes she started with level Yellow and moved up to level Orange. Sometimes she started from a higher level. With this journey, as the problem may include several steps, it would be too overwhelming to read 3 levels of problem, I am going to try something new, I am going to write parts of the problem in different colors: text in green for a first level of difficulty, text in orange for a medium level of difficulty, text in red for the higher level of difficulty. Hopefully Rosie will get used to the format soon, and so will you :-)
WedWoPro #2 – Making pancakes
Rosie was excited, she had some friends coming for breakfast !
- 2 friends from her school, and 3 friends from her pottery class.
- 3 friends from her school, 2 friends from her pottery class, and 4 friends from her neighborhood.
- 10 friends from her school, 3 friends from her pottery class, and 4 friends from her neighborhood. However, 5 could not come.
How many friends were coming?
Rosie decided to make pancakes for her friends. She made:
- 2 pancakes for each of her friends.
- 3 pancakes for each of her friends.
- 1 and 1/2 pancakes for each of her friends.
How many pancakes did she make to her friends ?
After breakfast, there was :
- 4 pancakes left.
- 1 pancake left.
- 1/2 of a pancake left.
Rosie decided to share them with her brother, so that both of them would have the same amount.
How many pancakes did she and her brother have?
Here is the .pdf if you want to print it out (WedWoPro2).
- Level green: 5 friends were coming, Rosie made 10 pancakes, and Rosie and her brother had each 2 pancakes.
- Level orange: 9 friends were coming, Rosie made 27 pancakes, and Rosie and her brother had each 1/2 of a pancake.
- Level red: 12 friends were coming, Rosie made 18 pancakes, and Rosie and her brother had each 1/4 of a pancake.
I am not writing the equations, as I do not want to make them expected. I let my child explore the problem in a “meaningful way” for her (Carpenter et al, 2014), sometimes she models with concrete objects, sometimes she draws, sometimes she writes the equation. Symbols come in time, our journeys are about making sense of mathematical relationships.
This week, I read the problem, as I did not want her to be overwhelmed with the colors/options.
Always interesting to observe how a child may solve a problem: first step though an equation, second step through modeling and third step through drawing !
Until next time !
- Carpenter, T., Fennema, E., Franke, M., Levi, L. and Empson S. (2014). Children’s Mathematics, Second Edition: Cognitively Guided Instruction. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann. ISBN-13:978-0325052878.