How can I help my child at home and what should my child use to study from?Students should review daily activities to reflect on their understanding by discussing classroom experiences with you. Your child may reflect on conversations from the Math Workshop, or possibly show you some of the strategies that the class has used to solve particular problems. Homework will also be assigned regularly to reinforce learning in the classroom.
How is the class period run during the math workshop? During the opening meeting, your childs teacher explains the goals for the math workshop and teaches a mini-lesson, introducing a new concept or skill. The teacher then poses a problem or series of problems for each child to solve based on the conversation during the mini-lesson.
Then during the work period, your child works individually, with a peer or with a group, to solve the problem presented in the mini-lesson, developing ideas and strategies. The teacher facilitates learning by circulating around the room, working/conferencing with students individually or in small groups.
During the closing meeting, the class regroups to discuss strategies used to solve the days problem, to share misunderstandings and correct them, to make connections to other areas of math and the real world, and to reflect upon what was learned during the lesson. Following this, homework is usually assigned to reinforce and extend what was learned during the day.
Are the children learning the basic skills? Yes. With experience, each child will learn to remember basic skills by constructing sense of them. Although fluency is more important than memorization, occasional drill and review exercises occur during the mathematics workshop to create balance of learning.
Can I observe a mathematics lesson with my childs teacher? Absolutely! Simply email or write a note in your child's planner to schedule a time convenient for both of you. Math is taught each day and your teacher will work with you to sechedule a convenient time.
How do absences affect my child? When your child is absent, it is extremely difficult to make up work because of the math discoveries and conversation that take place during the math workshop. Investigation lessons are designed to connect from day to day, therefore, when a child is absent he/she does not see connections being made, and as a result, has a harder time participating on the days after an absence. It is important to limit absences to a minimum so that your child may gain a complete understanding of concepts being explored in the classroom.