Monthly Archives: April 2010
March Numeracy Committee Meeting Minutes
Six Nations District Numeracy Committee Meeting Minutes
Thursday, March 11^{th}, 2010
JC Hill (2:30 – 4:00)
Agenda Items 
Present: C. Froman, A. Anderson, S. Hill, J. Restoule General
Absent: L. Martin, J. Thomas, J. McNaughton

Review minutes from last meeting 
Minutes were reviewed and approved with some questions.
Question was raised about the availability of the Understanding Math software. Jamieson school does not have it installed in the primary grades.
It was explained that originally all junior/intermediate teachers in the district had the demo software installed on their computers, as the software is geared towards these grade levels.
However, one component of the software does have lessons for K3, so follow up installation for primary teachers was done at ECG, ILT, and OMSK. A request was submitted on January 28^{th}, 2010 to have the software installed in the computer labs at ILT, JCH, and OMSK. At the time of the request, a response was given that personnel were too busy to fulfill the request.
Jamieson made the request to have the software installed for the primary teachers. M. Hickey and/or C. Bomberry will be contacted to do so.
Minutes approved and posted on the blog.

Webinar on Numeracy Nets from Pearson 
The webinar was successfully conducted. On the presentation side was Chris Allen (Research and Communications Manager for Pearson), Keith Bauman (Senior Author and Advisor on Numeracy Nets), and Samantha McGowan (Regional Manager and Advisor for Pearson).
Keith walked us through the Numeracy Nets. He began with an overview of the resource (what its function is, why it is a valuable resource), followed by how the checkpoints are related to the Ontario curriculum.
He then went through the features of each checkpoint, and the content areas of the Numeracy Nets package. From there he went on to describe how a teacher would use the Numeracy Nets resource, including how a teacher can move forward with classroom planning after the assessment, as the tool is designed as assessment FOR learning.
Next, Keith explained how the class and individual tracking sheets could be used on a classroom or school basis. This included how to use the data in Professional Learning Communities.
Some key points from the webinar include: Ø Numeracy Nets (NN) are primarily designed as assessment FOR learning; NOT to assess students AFTER they have done an activity Ø NN check for a student’s/class’ readiness to learn grade level material Ø NN BUILDS on a teacher’s existing math program with LINKS to the current classroom materials Ø Black Line Masters contained on the CDROM are adjustable in the Word format
Question was asked concerning the testing of students who are known to be out of grade level. Keith replied that the tasks are designed to be simple enough that most anyone should be able to complete them as they are written, so use of the NN should remain within the grade level binder of the class using NN. Certainly starting with the appropriate grade level would be the first step, with teacher discretion occurring afterwards.
A second question asked about how NN addresses the need to emphasize the idea and understanding that math is more than computations and formulas, and that conceptual learning and understanding is what students require. Keith described how NN is related to Marian Small’s First Steps in Mathematics program, which emphasizes conceptual development.

Math Assessment Tools 
PD planning for Numeracy Nets: With the new information gathered from the webinar, it was determined that math committee members were better equipped to assist with teacher use in the schools. It was suggested that implementation be discussed at divisional meetings. Joe is available for these meetings and will be looking to focus on the use of NN in the third term.
Teacher use: It was uncertain based on the committee members in attendance, whether or not teachers in the district had used the Numeracy Nets yet. Joe shared that he was aware that the JC Hill staff had, and feedback was positive regarding the initial use.
Ideas for ONAP implementation: As Numeracy Nets continue to be a focus; it was decided to delay any formal implementation of the ONAP resource. The understanding is that teachers do have the resource in their classrooms and are welcome to use them at any time, with formal PD and assistance to come at a later date.

CAT/Insight Testing Opportunity 
Follow up on participation: Two schools (ECG and ILT) are signed up to participate in the Spring. Packages will be sent out in mid April. ILT will be conducting it in April and ECG in May.

Math contest (Caribou) 
Upcoming dates/Classes involved: The next two Caribou contest dates were shared. Grades 5/6 compete on April 21^{st} and grades 3/4 compete on May 19^{th}. See the blog for full details.
Past results: Results from the grade 3 participants were shared. Joe presented certificates to the ILT students at their March recognition assembly. See blog for full details.

OMSK Math Night on February 17th 
Report on how it went: The OMSK math night was well attended by staff, students and parents. Plenty of great math activities were shared, presented and played. See blog for full details.

ECG Math Night 
Due to the length of the webinar, we did not get to the remainder of the agenda (except for the Wish List item below). All items will be bumped to the next meeting, which is April 22^{nd}.

Explore Learning Teacher Passwords 
Comments/concerns/feedback:
PD opportunity update:

Mathville 1

Comments/concerns/feedback?: 
Wish List of items/books 
Joe mentioned that he heard an idea or request to compile a list of essential professional reading materials for all education staff concerning Numeracy. A few key texts were shared, with the request that committee members bring their own “must have” list of texts to add to the draft version of the master list.

Caribou Contest Results
Yesterday, Six Nations students wrote the Brock University Caribou Math Contest for grades 5 and 6. We had an outstanding participation rate, with three schools entering 32 students. They should all be proud of their effort and willingness to compete.
Math and Technology websites
Here are some places where you can use technology and the web to assist in your math planning, teaching and learning. Thanks to Lynda K. for providing/suggesting these websites.
Math and Children’s Literature
Here are some websites that connect Math and Literature:
More time on teaching
More time on teaching
Reports are in…
Following my Web Site workshop provided for students and parents of Emily C. General school, the results are in: Visitors to the blog where the sites are listed (see the sidebar for the link or click here) increased by 54 visits and 316 page views for the week of April 7th to April 13th, according to the Site Meter stats tracker. That’s an average of 8 visits and 45 page views a day. Hopefully students are finding that math learning can be FUN, EASY and ENGAGING!!
Literature for Math available for Teacher Sign Out
We also have some literature that ties in with math expectations and concepts. Google any of the titles; chances are there are some lesson plans related to the books. We are starting small but will add to this as more titles are suggested and purchased for the use of the teachers in our district.
Literature for Math available for Individual Teacher Sign Out
Author 
Title 
IN 
OUT 
Burns, Marilyn 
Spaghetti and Meatballs for All 


Carle, Eric 
The Grouchy Ladybug 


Friedman, Aileen 
A Cloak for the Dreamer 


Hutchins, Hazel 
A Second is a Hiccup 


Katz, Karen 
Ten Tiny Babies 


Krebs, Laurie 
We All Went on Safari: A Counting Journey through Tanzania 


Mockford, Caroline 
Cleo’s Counting Book 


Neuschwander, Cindy 
Sir Cumference and the Isle of Immeter 


Schwartz, David M. 
How Much is a Million? 


Ulmer, Mike 
Loonies and Toonies 


Math Resources Available for Sign Out
We recently were able to stock up on some resources for teachers to use in their math programs.
Math Resources available for Individual Teacher Sign Out
ResOURCE 
GRADE LEVEL 
IN 
OUT 
Educating the Young Child w/Autism Spectrum Disorders 
K8 


Differentiated Instruction Planner 
K8 


Closing the Achievement Gap 
K8 


Understanding Geometry 
K8 


Mental Math Workouts (360 Mind Stetchers) Level A 
K8 


Puzzle It! Logic Puzzles & Tricks 
K8 


Puzzle It! PreAlgebra Riddles 
K8 


Math Experiences for Young Learners 
PKK 


HandsOn Standards: Teaching with Math Manipulatives 
PKK 


Early Graphing Hidden Pictures 
K1 


Math and Literature 
K1 


111 CutUp Clocks & Cards for Learning to Tell Time 
K2 


Math and Nonfiction 
K2 


Math For All: Differentiating Instruction 
K2 


Dice Activities for Math: Engage, Enrich, Empower 
K3 


Teaching Young Gifted Children in the Regular Classroom 
K4 


Canadian Money Activity Book 
K4 


30 ReadytoUse Math Transparencies 
K5 


Encyclopedia of Math Blackline Masters 
K6 


For Every Learner: Math (The Mailbox Books) 
1 


Money Matters: Developing Math & Problem Solving Skills 
1 


HandsOn Standards: Teaching with Math Manipulatives 
12 


Graph Art 
12 


Math By All Means: Probability 
12 


Canadian Money Activities 
14 


For Every Learner: Math (The Mailbox Books) 
2 


Money Matters: Developing Math & Problem Solving Skills 
2 


Problem Solving with Math: Selecting Successful Strategies 
23 


Graphing Hidden Pictures 
24 


Fun Flap Facts: Multiplication 
24 


Math and Test Taking 
3 


The KEY Study Guide 20092010 Ontario Edition 
3 


MathSmart Problem Solving 
3 


DriveThru Menu Math (Beginning Money Skills) 
3 


Money Matters: Developing Math & Problem Solving Skills 
3 


For Every Learner: Math (The Mailbox Books) 
3 


HandsOn Standards: Teaching with Math Manipulatives 
34 


Power Practice: Applying ProblemSolving Strategies 
34 


Brain Boosting Math: Problem Solving, Games, Brainteasers 
34 


DriveThru Menu Math (Add & Subtract Money) 
35 


Coordinate Graphing Hidden Pictures 
35 


Minilessons for Math Practice 
35 


Building Math Vocabulary 
35 


Dice Activities for Multiplication: Facts, Fluency, Fun 
36 


ComicStrip Math: Problem Solving 
36 


Menu Math: The Hamburger Hut (Multiplication/Division) 
36 


Learning Math with Calculators 
38 


Differentiating Instruction in the Regular Classroom 
312 


The KEY Study Guide 20092010 Ontario Edition 
4 


For Every Learner: Math (The Mailbox Books) 
4 


Math Twisters: Challenging and Fun Activities 
4 


Math Engagement: Teacher Resource and Student Activities 
4 


MathSmart Problem Solving 4B 
4 


Problem Solving with Math: Selecting Successful Strategies 
45 


DriveThru Menu Math (Multiply & Divide Money) 
46 


Teaching Math with Everyday Manipulatives 
46 


Math Grid Games: Number, Space and Measurement 
46 


The KEY Study Guide 20092010 Ontario Edition 
5 


For Every Learner: Math (The Mailbox Books) 
5 


Daily Math WarmUps 
5 


HandsOn Standards: Teaching with Math Manipulatives 
56 


Power Practice: Data Analysis 
56 


I Have, Who Has? 38 Interactive Card Games 
56 


Solving Problems in Astronomy: Density, Volume, Mass 
58+ 


Math Word Puzzles 
58 


Solving Math Problems and Summarizing Results 
58+ 


Coordinate Graphing: Creating Pictures Using Math Skills 
58 


The KEY Study Guide 20092010 Ontario Edition 
6 


MathSmart Problem Solving 6B 
6 


Math and Nonfiction 
68 


Sizing Up Measurement 
68 


Math Minutes: One Hundred Minutes to Better Basic Skills 
6 


Math Masterpieces: Math Skills + Puzzles = Masterpieces 
67 


Math Minutes: One Hundred Minutes to Better Basic Skills 
7 


Use It! Don’t Lose It! Daily Math Practice 
7 


Why i Applaud a Kid who Questions…
Thinking about DUMB Questions
We know that one of tools sets we can develop in our student are the HOTS – Higher Order Thinking Skills. Teaching HOTS and use of timely, appropriate feedback provide the best learning outcomes for our students.
To be able to use Higher Order Thinking Skills we must, MUST, encourage questioning. To facilitate good formative assessment we must encourage questioning. We must develop a classroom environment where asking questions is encouraged and rewarded.
I am sure all of us have heard the phrase “there’s no such thing as a dumb question” and its true. The student who asks a “dumb question”, the how do you do this question when I have just spent 5 minutes explaining it, isn’t asking the dumb question! They are saying that my explanation, no matter how clear and concise I though was, did not clearly explain the situation for them.
If we get the same student asking us time and again the “dumb question” then its time for me as an educator, to reflect on my communication. Its time for me to consider changing how I am communicating. I Need to ask myself
* What is their learning style?
* What is my primary mode of lesson delivery?
* Are they a visual learner, Auditory, readwrite or kineasthetic?
* How would I find out?
* Do they have a learning need that is not being addressed?
* or are they not being challenged, engaged or motivated?
Our “Dumb question” asking students is often taking a huge risk, they are inviting ridicule and drawing attention to themselves. But they are also taking charge of their own learning, they are telling me that they value learning and want to achieve. For these reason they must be encouraged.
But how often do we see the brightest of our students remaining quiet when we ask are there any questions?
I suspect that there is a stigma associated with asking questions. A stigma that says if you ask questions you are dumb or don’t understand. That by not asking questions you are saying I understand, by asking questions you are saying I don’t.
We need to have written above every whiteboard…
…Smart kids ask questions…
I want my students to question what I say, because when they do they THINK. And the thinking they are doing are the Higher Order Thinking Skills of Analysis and Evaluation. Ted McCain in his book teaching for tommorow talks of deliberately withholding information to have the students question the learning process. To have them formulate and then ask the key questions, to encourage and facilitate higher order thinking skills.
By asking questions they are analysing and evaluating. They are making judgements, constructing and deconstructing, estimating, critiquing, validating, checking, testing, monitoring, debating and discussing…
So,
Smart Kids Ask Questions
* Write it in big letters
* Print it out
* And stick it to your wall!
I guess a question that should be asked is what about the attention seeker? Well, that’s part of developing that environment that encourages learning. We all have those students now and again, and we can’t not develop questioning skills because of one who needs attention. Rather we need to deal with the student and the root cause of the issue rather than avoiding the situation.