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Making Thinking Visible

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Reasoning with Evidence & Persuasive Thinking



I cannot live without brain work. What else is there to live for?
                                                                                                     -Sherlock Holmes

This past week, I brought out my Sherlock Holmes hat. I have a number of hats, funky glasses, and feathered boas that I use while teaching, but my Sherlock Holmes hat is my favorite. In room 13, we've been talking about evidence. We began our persuasive essay in writer's workshop. We've been writing theories about the main characters in our book group novels and mentor text for reader's workshop. We've been working on a smart goal that requires that we quote evidence directly from a text to support our thinking. Our need for evidence is everywhere

However, I didn't dust off my Sherlock hat for those endeavors! I saved it for our exponents investigation!  One of my favorite thinking routines to use is Claim-Support-Question. We've been studying powers of ten in our math workshop, so I came up with the question, "Do other multiplication patterns exist when we use exponents with other numbers?"

I began my lesson by introducing the Claim-Support-Question Routine. Using a slide show that I had created, we discussed the words "claim" and "support."  I asked students my math question, and then sent them back to their table groups to discuss it and write a claim statement on their table's chart paper.

After they had written their claims, they returned to the carpet to report out to the whole groups.  Then, we talked about how we might support our claims.  What procedures might they follow? They returned to their tables to investigate. 

This was fun to watch. All groups, except one, claimed that there would be patterns. Most explained that the data and patterns we had collected and noticed in our powers of 10 work had informed their claim-making process.  All groups chose a number and found the exponential products for that number up to an exponent of 10.  I allowed them to use calculators for this part, so it was more easily investigated.  We stopped briefly to remember that scientists and mathematicians want more than one set of data to prove a claim, and then groups continued to work with other numbers to triangulate their data. 

After making claims and supporting them with mathematical evidence, my students asked a number of questions, but two particular questions gave me goosebumps:
  1. If we multiply fractions exponentially, will there be patterns?
  2. If we multiply decimals exponentially, will there be patterns?
These questions turned into another math investigation. What happens when we multiply decimal numbers like 10.4 * 10.4 and 10.4 * 10.4 * 10.4? 

Next time, I want to use Claim-Support-Question to introduce powers of 10. I think it will help us observe and explore multiplication and division patterns. 


The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance observes.
                                                                                                     -Sherlock Holmes

Sometimes, the best thing about being a teacher who blogs is that I discover new ideas while I'm reflecting and writing about my practice. Writing this blog post has done that for me! I'm dreaming up future applications for Claim-Support-Question. This week in writer's workshop, my students will be writing their claims for their persuasive essays. I can't think of a more perfect way for them to do this than by using this thinking routine. Using the thinking routine organizer I made, they will be able to plan out their writing and record their research that supports their claim. The question part of the of the routine could help them examine counter claims, and their possible responses to them. 

In reader's workshop, my students are going to use Claim-Support-Question to deepen their character theories. They'll make a claim about the character, support it with evidence from the text, and dig deeper into their thinking with more questioning. 

If you want to read more about Claim-Support-Question, Making Thinking Visible, and Project Zero's work with thinking routines, be sure to visit THIS website. 

FREEBIE ALERT

If you'd like a copy of the inquiry math lesson I taught click the picture below.



You might also be interested in the these visible thinking resources:









OR these exponent and powers of ten resources(there's a freebie here!):




Consider entering the WE TEACH SO HARD podcast $100 giveaway! It's going on for one more week! You COULD win! Click the picture to enter. 





This week, I've teamed up with some fabulous teacher bloggers for November's Teacher Talk. Check them out below!






6 comments

  1. I'm totally going to do this!! I love thinking about all your hats & costumes; you're such a fun & engaging teacher!!

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    1. Oh Kathie! Thank you! I just gotta add some drama into my classroom. I can't get bored. If I do, my kids do, too! Thanks for stopping by to read.

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  2. You are one of the most creative teachers I know. You make learning such fun. I'm amazed at the things you do with math. Thanks for sharing this awesome post.

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    1. You made my day, Deann! Thank you for the high compliment. HUGS!

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  3. I love the way you capture your students' attention. You're an inspiration!

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    1. Thank you so much...LOL. I just gotta have a little bit of drama in every lesson. :-)

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