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Teacher: Can you use numbers to make a sentence with this equation? Look at it - think about it... What if I changed it so that we have box plus heart equals triangle. What if I put box plus three equals triangle - take a second, talk about it with your partner.
Teacher: Why did the numbers that we used for the shapes change? For this one, why is square, 1, heart 19, triangle 20 but for this one, square is 3, heart 4 and triangle is 7 what do you think?
Marian: If you decide to do the first thing your problem is this: Five people went to the movies. They spent $15 for snacks, altogether they spent $45. And you have to tell me how much the ticket cost for the movie. Youʼre going to have to figure it out, but youʼre also going to have to write an equation, just like you wrote equations up here that would help us see whatʼs going on in that question.

Okay - if you decide to do the second one - listen to the second one - because this one is unusual. It says - some people went to the movies and spent some money at the snack bar. This is whatʼs weird about this one - you get to decide how many people and you get to decide how much money they spent at the snack bar. The only deal is altogether you can only spend $45. If you do the first one, we told you how many people and how much money is spent on the snack bar. If you do the second one, you get decide how many people and you get decide how much money is at the snack bar, but you are all spending $45. Is everyone clear about whatʼs different about them?
Marian: I think ahead what can I ask to talk to everybody because I want every single kid to feel they were valuable in this discussion.
Marian: Did you end up spending more money on the movie tickets or on snacks? How about you?
Student: On the movie
Marian: More on the tickets for her
Student: Snacks
Marian: Snacks for her, how about you?

Student: Snacks

Outside Class: Consider the Math Outside Class: Consider the Math Outside Class: Plan Powerful Questions Consider Student Engagement Inside the Classroom: Pose Powerful Questions Inside the Classroom: Consider the Math Inside the Classroom: Respond to Students

Inside the classroom, if students don't respond the way you expected, then we will need to change the way we ask the question. Teachers may have planned an open question or parallel task that they thought would work, but several things can happen:

- maybe the question is not clear enough to the students and the teacher has to adapt or adjust it.

- maybe a student says something that could actually improve the intended question or task

- maybe the specific actions students take mean scaffolding questions are needed which were not planned or some of the questions that were planned are not needed. Occasionally, students can be encouraged to make different and more appropriate choices. Teachers should also make sure that they don’t “close down” the question by giving away too much or make it seem like one parallel task is more desirable than another. It is also important to adapt follow-up questions based on what kids actually say.

In the first part of the video clip, the teacher is presenting a “Minds On” open question to the class. In the follow-up to the task, she is focusing on how numbers are used for the shapes can change.

In the second part of the video clip, a parallel task is being introduced with two choices for the students. The differences between the two questions are clarified for students. An example of common questions is shown, which are asked of everybody no matter which question they chose.

Inside the Classroom Respond to Students >>