Thursday, 19 October 2017

Moving from skip counting to basic facts

The children were very good at counting in fives. However none of them used basic facts the first time.

They then looked at how they could work this out using 10s. 

They struggled at first to work out how many groups of ten there would be. The either used the same number 10x6=60 or continued to skip count. 

It took a bit of practice but they started to get this idea. They talked about the number of groups being halved. 

Then they did a problems like 7 lots of 5 they then made 3 groups of ten and one group of five. They repeated this with 3s making groups of 6. Then 4s. 

This is a great strategy that I don't use as much as I could. I have been aiming to get them to using timetables that I have not pushed the way they could make different groups. I think this partitional thinking is key to developing a wider sense of how to solve addition problems. The problem that we use get different types of thinking.

Later Jo talked about moving children into solid stage 5 and giving them the basic facts knowledge they need for stage 6.

When we are teaching children multiplication when need to help children generalise by knowing families of facts 1x17 is the same as 17x1=. Then they can work out the easiest ones first 1x, 10x then we start to use the knowledge we have to find unknown facts. 

Math Learning Moving from equal sharing to repeated addition

Jo did some modelling for us develop our teaching practice around moving children from equal sharing to using repeated addition.

First she ask the children to skip count in 2s, 5s, 3s. Then she ask them to identify the written form of fractions 1/2, 1/4, 1/3 and 1/10. Some of the children could identify 1/2, 1/4 and 1/3 but done could read 1/10.

She then ask the children to share some counters. She asked them to share them fairly between the monkeys. The children needed support to understand the question. She did not give them the counters. None of the children answers. So Jo asked "How could we make sure they get a fair share if I give you the counters. The child gave each five rather than equal sharing. The children said we can use our timetables.

After identify where the children were at Jo began teaching. She started with two monkeys and 8 counters. How many will each get. Children found it easier and used doubles knowledge. Followed this with adding more counters. Student were good with doubble so they moved on.

They then moved on to 3 monkeys and 12 counters. Students again used timetables and repeated addition. They then discussed what fraction they had and practiced writing fractions and learnt about the denominator telling use how many groups.

They moved on the four monkeys the children said straight away they get 1/4 because the bottom number is how many monkeys there are. 


The way Jo used word problems in the way she talked I do sometimes but perhaps I need to do this more. I also think this reinforced the need for my to continue to do fraction recognition as often as possible. Also the importance of managing children so that everyone gets thinking time. Well this is something that I try to do it does not always happen as they are so keen to share. 

Monday, 18 September 2017

Inquiry update term 3

This term I have been focussing on bring the fluency ideas we build through video modelling into our small group lessons. I have done this through modelling of small passages of the text during group sessions and getting children to read aloud and reread fluently. We have also be considering the different uses for the digital tool (screencastify) that we used for video modelling and students have been creating review video as well and screencasts of presentations to make digital stories.

The interest part for me has been how my teaching now reflects the key ideas emerging from my research.

These ideas are:



Well my inquiry has somewhat taken a back seat to the writing of my research this term. It is clear that developing the ideas of fluency is still happening in the small group setting.

The reading of our Penpal letters shows how far the class have come. Over half of my class wanted to read their letters out loud to the class and those who did read fluently and the rest of the class supported them in doing this.

Next term I want to draw on the term theme to integrate fluency. We will be doing a lot of song reading and listening and we will talk about how phrasing is achieved. My goal for next learn is to embed the fluency criteria in multiple media and transfer this into silent reading. I believe that this will increase comprehension for my class.

I will also be looking at how paired warm ups can support basic facts development in maths. This has come from the professional development that we received from Jo.

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Maths Place Value

Today we are very lucky to have the wonderful Jo back with us to talk about Place Value.
Jo talked about it being important to make sure all place value learning was grounded with materials. By creating bundles of tens and grouping tens to make hundreds.

We need to make sure place value becomes our learners  friends by doing it every day.
This many look like give the kids numbers. They order the numbers, expand it, write add tens it. Say the numbers after and numbers before.
They should be provided with loads of materials in this time frame.

Remember the teaching model:
-Start with material.
-Move to imaging.
-Then to the more abstract.



Jo had some lovely helpers to show us how she would teach a lesson.
First she gave them the problem: 19+6 to see where they were at with addition. They struggled to explain their thinking.
After this she gave them some tens frames to she what their number ID was like. She did this with numbers between 1-10 and then teen numbers. They were very good at this.

Then they moved on to using counters to find 10 and numbers 9+4=13. Learners did this well.
Then they moved to imaging by putting the counters on the frames under the book. Then encourage the same thinking. 8+5 If there is 8 how many empty squares are there? They made a tidy ten. 10+3=13
Then she revised the numbers 6+9 and encouraged them to think about what number would be easiest to make a tidy ten. Children did not add to the 9 but added to the 6. Then Jo modelled adding to the 9. Then she moved into 19+6=

She encouraged a lot of pair and share times during the group lesson.

The power of imagery. We noticed in this lesson that when they were prompted to image they had more success and felt more confident.

When working with a group it is important to be able to hear and respond to the kids ideas and misconception.

Basic addition facts can be broken down into steps to learn.

Monday, 14 August 2017

Inquiry Term 3


This Term I am building on my Fluency Inquiry. Reflecting back on the Inquiry so far and thinking about how this fits into the Manaiakalani Inquiry model. Then I considers what will come next. As my Inquiry is linked with my research the new gaps and challenges I have identified in my data are now feeding into my inquiry. 


Thursday, 27 July 2017

Teaching beginning readers using prompts effectively!

Today we had the wonderful Helen Squires. Help us to develop the best ways to support our developing readers. This session really helped me to think about which prompts I use regularly and the ones that I need to start using,

Teaching children who are at the stage of learning to read.

-We often forget the importance of reading to the children. This allows for development vocabulary and children will begin to use this language in their conversation with others.

-Observational drawing can also be a great way to develop language and the skills of noticing. Does the object look the same as you picture. What can you see.

When learner are focussed on decoding. You need to orientate the learners into the focus of the text. This is a short opening focussing on the Vocabulary in the text rather than opening up the topic by discussing the topic you sum up the main bit of the story. For example the little red hen: This is a story about a hen whose friends are too lazy to help her bake a cake.

Magenta- At this level the focus is not what you say you must see, what you see you must see. These book have the same phrasing across the pages. Again Orientate the book, this is a book about things we do at school. Children need to tap on each page. Children read in their own time not all together so you can catch each child as they read. Children will often point to space between words or after word. You stop them and say "you said cut can you see cut?"  If they don't know the word you tell them. Once they are one to one pointing less repetitive books are introduced. Once they have learnt the words get them checking "You said the can you see the." child "Yes I see the" They might point to the wrong word they can confirm they are wrong. "Tent" confirming cover word you said tent what would you expect to see for tent, t..t...t... Child T

Magenta is just getting the DOS-direction, orientation, sequence. This applies to arranging the magnetic letters. Then break it make multiple times then write it. This should be quick at the end of the book.

Red is where the text changes, this provides an opportunity to think. I go to school on is the pattern. On the last page it will change for example I go to school in. For this the child is likely to say "on" You say you said on do you see on. Then you tell them. Read the sentence with them. Confirming for changes. Have you still got more words to say. This is when the child changes to text but has not read all the word. The boy climbed up the mountain, The child say The boy climbed up the hill. You said hill do you see hill, h....h..hill. Then you tell them.

This is the level at which we try to lose the finger pointing, Then pointing is strong get it gone.
If children are struggling to stop finger pointing break it down into three words etc to build fluency.

The boy went to the supermarket... Child said the boy went to the shop. prompt: Try that again and think who went to the supermarket.

Still doing word work. Making or breaking. A word they know "Can" Get child to make can. give them m, r, t. Can you make Man. Can you make can, Can you make ran. Always go back to the word they know in between new words.

Yellow- This again build the stills of confirming and discounting. The sentence is the boy knocked on the door of the shack. The child say " They boy knocked on the door of the house" You said .... They could give them options. Cottage etc.

Word work adding endings, beginning, vowel sounds etc.

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Many Hats

This term I have been both a researcher and a teacher. Taking on these two roles and considering what they mean for me and my class has been a challenge and a privilege. At times it was challenging changing hats and looking at my teaching and my learners through two different lenses. However it was also very rewarding. Having the structure of a research design and thinking carefully about how information was gathered and what action I took, why I took them and exactly what impact they had more critically as a researcher reminds me of the importance of stepping back as a teacher and looking at yourself through a different lense. You can't expect the same actions to produce different results so it is important to be very reflective and even critical of yourself to make sure what you are doing is the very best for your students and what they need to learn at this point and time in their life.

My two hats are important and having them in such a formal way this term has reminded me that if not in  a formal way I will always be a researcher as I inquire into my practice as a teacher.

By en:User:Eric Bouliane [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)