Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sneaking in Blocks as Math

In this era of test prep and bubble-in answers, teachers are under a LOT of pressure to stick to the basics. Of course, I'm a bit of a rebel and will try to sneak things in under the radar that I know are good for developing actual thinking skills. Even though an administrator walking into a classroom may not see it as preparing them for a test, I know in the long run it is.

One of my math workstations is always blocks. I think it takes a lot of spatial reasoning to be able to build and logic to figure out how to do it so everything doesn't come tumbling down. I have a few students who love to challenge themselves-can we make a ramp that will make it roll faster? Can we use all the blocks for one structure? Can we make something similar to this famous architecture? All of that I believe is conducive to learning. This is one my kids made the other day. Now tell me they aren't learning something from this activity?

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