Thursday, May 14, 2015

Dinah Harvey Reflection

We have just completed two days working with, and learning off Dinah Harvey as our Maths facilitator.  One of the key messages I have taken out of this (among many) is “Start giving challenges to rise to, not problems written on the board or worksheets”. Knowledge has to be connected to strategy. It’s the teacher’s job to find the gaps in knowledge when there are blockers in the strategies.  Dinah showed us the difference between students who are fluent in using strategies and those who are not.
So, digging deeper, I went looking for my focus groups reports from last year...

I found it interesting how two of the comments were focused on knowledge only.  This needs to be a pedagogical shift for some of our teachers and parents. We made the comment that because parents were taught so differently in maths, that it is easier for teachers not to send strategy work home for home learning. Instead, teachers send home knowledge however this only reinforces the knowledge-focused, archaic view on quality teaching of mathematics. One way to overcome this is alter the comment slightly by saying: “The knowledge that will help them with this is...” Also, send home Open-ended, rich tasks. It sends a different message about what mathematics is in every day life.

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