This blog post is the third in a book study over the book Accessible Mathematics by Steven Leinwand.
Click on the affiliate link below to get your copy of Accessible Mathematics.
Click here to see the post for the Instructional Shift #1 ~ Incorporate ongoing cumulative review into every day’s lesson.
Click here to see the post for Instructional Shift #2 ~ Adapt what we know works in our reading programs and apply it to mathematics instruction.
Instructional Shift #3 ~ Use multiple representations of mathematical entities.
This shift is, BY FAR, one that I concentrate THE MOST on in my classroom. I do a lot of research when preparing for my lessons. I mix and match ideas together and I create lessons that are tailored to the needs of my students. Using multiple representations for concepts allows for the success of the vast majority of the students in my classroom.
Over the years, I have realized that not all students interpret my lessons the way I think that they are. I have realized just because I like to convert all of the numbers to decimals when ordering fractions, decimals, and percents, that some students like to convert them all to percents and that some like to find common denominators and convert them to fractions. Students learn in different ways. Let me repeat…. students learn and interpret information in different ways.
I try my hardest to hit all learning styles in every one of my lessons. My lessons generally consist of some sort of hands on manipulative that students physically move objects around. We then move to pictorial representations of the skill, and then finally work on the skill in a more abstract, mental state.
Realizing that not all students learn at the same rate, I tend to let students use the manipulatives or draw the pictures if they need, for as long as they need. It’s kind of the Montessori method… students will progress to the next level whenever they are ready for it.
Here are some links to a few blog posts in which my lessons use different representations. Click on the pictures to go to the post.
Finding the circumference of a circle
Here is an introduction to integers that I LOVE!
Here is a GREAT post about teaching students to add and subtract integers.
Do you teach about mixed numbers and improper fractions?
Here’s one for teaching how to multiply fractions.
These are just a few of the examples I have of teaching students using a variety of representations. It does take a lot on the part of preparation, but it makes up for it in the way of fun for the students as well as their comprehension and retention.
Do you use multiple representations when teaching your lessons? If so, I’d love to hear an example! Thanks for following along with this book study!