Day 89 – Problem Solving Assessment and Paddle Design

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Math 8 – Today was very busy. First I had students complete an assessment on problem solving.  I asked kids to complete their own individual work for 10 minutes and then I then I put them into random groups and had them work on it together. Finally they were asked to reflect on the process.

The assessment had some good and bad. On the bad side, the problem was probably too difficult. Many groups did not get very far.  The easiest solution was to use trial and error, and a couple of students solved it by writing out an equation.  Some students/groups started with trial and error and then identified a pattern that helped them.

Because of our previous fraction problem, lots of kids got trapped into trying to work backwards, which really isn’t the way forward. I think this activity would be really good if a better problem was given: something with a lower floor but high ceiling.

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The students also were given the start of an on-going project that we’ll work on.  They are using measurement and proportional reasoning to size their personal Greenland paddle.  Later in the year we will take these measurements and model them in Onshape and 3D print them.

To properly complete the Greenland paddle, complete design schematics are needed.

Links: problem assessment sheet,      Greenland paddle

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