Ok, so I’ll be using whiteboards extensively this year in Algebra and Physics (9th grade). Not the little whiteboards (I *been* usin’ those man), but 24″ x 32″ poster size ones. The idea came from a kickass workshop I attended this summer on teaching using models (not *that* kind of models). Go here for info on the modeling method! Here’s an example of one I did at the workshop:

Ours were the best boards there! In your face other groups!

So, to get the students used to the process of whiteboarding their learnings, I figured I would need a good intro activity. Here’s what I was thinking (for my Algebra class, I already have one for Physics):

set-up = one board per three students, everyone has a marker

1. “Think of two numbers that add up to 20, everyone write down a set”

2. I’ll call for a few random ones and write em on the board

3. “Am I missing any” “Is there an easier way to complete this list?” GO! (as in “go make a complete list”)

4. **circle up whiteboards:** (at least one group should have a complete list with two columns)

-“Why did you set it up that way?”

-“Do you agree?”

-“Whose labels are the best?”

-“Do we need labels? Why?”

-“Do you agree?”

5. “Is anything missing now?” (maybe prompt for (0, 20) or (10.5, 9.5)

6. “Describe the relationship in words. Does one column depend on the other?” GO!

7. **circle up whiteboards:**

-“Are all the descriptions the same?”

-“Are any wrong?”

-“What might be a simpler way to write this?” GO! (the hope is they will come up with x + y = 20 or something similar)

8. “Now we’ve got a table, a verbal description, and an algebraic description. What other ways can we represent this?” (prompt for graph if they don’t say it, then create graphs in groups) GO!

9. **circle up whiteboards:**

-“Are all the graphs the same?”

-“Are any wrong?”

10. “Let’s put it all together” GO! (table, verbal, algebraic, graph)

11. **circle up whiteboards:**

-“Where did we begin?”

-“What was the point?”

-“What’s the title of this activity?” BTW: A bunch of my questions were inspired by watching the teacher in this Dan Meyer post.

My thinking is that since this is such a simple example, we should be able to come up with these four representations fairly quickly. For now, the point is fitting them on the whiteboard, we’ll get to doing some real math soon enough.

What do y’all think?

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Love the start of the blog… Just wanted to holler at another teacher bridging the math science gap. Teaching each helped me so much in teaching the other!

Thanks! yeah, the connections are endless. I can’t wait for the explorations this year!

I love your intro activity enough I may just steal it, *grin*. My classes (also math and physics) whiteboarded last year but I learned too late that I should have spent more time up front getting them accustomed to the technique. –@mgolding

Awesome! I hope that at least some of my stuff will be worth stealing 🙂

I think that the activity will be great! I’ve thought about using whiteboards. I’d love to hear how it goes.

So far, whiteboards are my favorite thing ever! This lesson went even better than I thought it would.