It makes them feel as though they are true mathematicians whenever we get this journal out.
When I implement this problem, I allow the students to work in self-selected groupings.
The problem also requires the students to work with time, which is a great review.
Given that this is the first problem of the year, I take great care to be positive while getting the students started.
I know the power of first impressions, and I want the students to be energized and excited for more.
I have the students work the problems in a special “math journal” which is saved for only our most challenging problems.
They also helped me to challenge the students who were high achievers and to develop the confidence of the ones who needed more support.
An open-ended problem that I often use at the beginning of the year is “The Weather Problem.” It is fairly straightforward and gets the students’ number sense gears turning, which is pivotal at this point in the year.
Pattern Problems: visual patterns that require students to draw what comes next.
Teachers should ask students to explain how they know what comes next to develop students' ability to explain their thinking.