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Summer SAVY, Session 2 Day 4, Adventures in Algebra (3rd – 4th)

Posted by on Friday, June 21, 2024 in blog, SAVY.

I’m so sad to see the mathematicians leave Adventures in Algebra. We’ve had a wonderful week of learning together.  

We wrapped up the week with a final Math Think. Graham Fletcher’s three-act math task challenged us to determine how many cups of sugar are in a case of Mountain Dew with limited information. Mathematicians only got to know how many grams are in one can. We successfully converted from grams to cups and solved equations using fractions and proportional thinking. This would be a great building block to try some equations with fractions at home; our learning didn’t take us here this week, but they are certainly ready! 

After Math Think, we explored some final Hands-On Equations. This time, students solved equations with both negative and positive integers. We learned several new legal moves, including the “Convenient Zero.” Ask your mathematician tonight why this move works mathematically.  

The rest of our day was spent on board games. Each student has created 28 Math Cards to use in their game, and many have added or created more. These 28 came from our different lessons, and they are an excellent, student-created representation of the kinds of problems we solved each day. On poster board, students drew and colored their game board. We passed out different materials including dice, play money, various tokens, Meeples (these were popular!), and other actual game pieces; all our mathematicians were able to take exactly what they wanted for the game. Paired with the instructions we wrote and published yesterday, students are leaving with a completed, self-designed game that uses Algebra to win. Some students may need to tweak or add at home, especially if the coloring was very involved, and they didn’t quite finish, but I hope you will play these games tonight as a family! To reinforce the procedural writing we did yesterday, try to play with ONLY the instructions; don’t let your mathematician explain it the first time. Then, make edits together and try again.  

Finally, as you receive rubrics from me for your student’s time at SAVY, I hope for several outcomes. First, I hope that you will see the growth in your mathematicians in the way they talk about math to you. On day one, we took a pre-test. 100% of students incorrectly solved for X when presented with a set of practice problems; however, now, they are masters at solving for X-Man’s name. Every student had a huge win this week. When I am scoring your student, I am viewing those scores as levels of support. A Level 5 would mean that your student accurately works with all content with no teacher support. In turn, a Level 3 delineates some teacher support and would be considered an appropriate level of support for a rising 3/4th grader doing math content that is 2-3 years accelerated (3s are great 🙂), while a Level 1 indicates a need for higher teacher support. None of these scores mean that your students can’t solve what I presented them with this week. In fact, all students in my class can do it with support! Instead, I hope it conveys to a student’s grown-ups how much support is needed to achieve accuracy.  

It’s been an amazing week of patterns, variables, operations, and learning here in Adventures in Algebra! Thank you for sharing your mathematicians this week.  

Ms. Whiting