Donna O'Donnell Figurski's Blog

It's All About Me!

On School #20 Whiteboard Math

Disclaimer: The name in this musing has been changed to protect the “infamous.”

Third grade is a blast. I had forgotten how much fun eight/nine years old can be – how grown up they are – how interesting their humor is. It’s definitely a different animal than First Grade. I have yo-yoed between the two grades my entire career, though I am usually housed in First. This year I am in Third Grade and loving it.

During a math lesson on rounding and estimating numbers last week, I had a surprise, which made me chuckle.

The children gathered on the floor in front of the whiteboard and the computer.  I deliver the first part of my lesson using the computer. A cutesy video, complete with a walrus and various other cartoon characters, explain the lesson to the children. Then I use the whiteboard to embellish the lesson, to further demonstrate the skill, and make it more interactive. The children come to the group with their mini whiteboards and dry erase markers. As I present a problem on my large whiteboard, they quickly jot their answers on their whiteboards and raise them in the air. Yes! Yes! Yes! No, try again. Yes! Yes! It’s a quick way to assess their knowledge of the task. It’s also a great motivator. They try to be the first in the air with the right answer – so it promotes quick thinking. And let’s face it, it’s downright fun. Shouldn’t all learning be that way?

After the rounding and estimating lesson as I was ready to dismiss the children from the group to embark on their next lesson, probably Spelling or English, a whiteboard shot in the air. Ellie sat behind it with a grin on her face.

It read: Mrs. Figurski is so cool. School is so fun!

You just have to love those third graders. I know, I do!

(Clip Art compliments of Bing.com.)

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October 6, 2010 - Posted by | Anything Writing, On School | , , , ,

2 Comments »

  1. What a fun way to learn math!

    Comment by kaya10 | October 6, 2010 | Reply

  2. Where is my whiteboard so I can write “Mom is so cool. I love her!”?

    Comment by jared | October 7, 2010 | Reply


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