Inside a kindergarten classroom with Augustana students

Questioning Has Begun

This week was a very productive week for Courtney and I with students in Mrs. Peterson’s class. Mrs. Peterson had asked us to work with the majority of the lower students to try and catch them up with the rest of the class as best we can. This is counting up to 20, recognizing quantities of numbers up to 10, and recognizing number symbols up to 20. There are several students that are almost there, but not quite. So those were the students that we worked with primarily on Tuesday. I did an iPad app with them where we traced numbers 1-20 with their fingers, and then we counting objects that were provided and picked the number symbol that went with how many objects we counted. I found this app to be very successful and enjoyable for these students. I surprisingly did not have any issues with the students having troubles with using their finger on the iPad.

Meanwhile, Courtney was working with students and the domino set. Mrs. Peterson had asked us to do this because dominoes are a big part of the 3rd quarter curriculum. This is being able to play the game of dominoes, recognize the quantity on each side of the domino tile, being able to determine which number is higher or lower on each domino tile above and below the line, and then later being able to add and subtract using the numbers on the domino tiles. Courtney focused on the easier tasks of recognizing the numbers on the dominoes, and which of the numbers is higher or lower.

On Thursday is when I really started to find I had some questions about students. I had previously made a game that Courtney and I played with our group of students for Mike’s math methods course. It was made with flash cards and the idea was to create a “pair.” half of the cards had number symbols (1, 2, 3, 4,… until 10) and then the other half had matching pairs to those numbers but with dot quantities. The students had to recognize/determine the number of dots with the number symbol it represents. As students created correct pairs, I asked the students “Which one is more?” For example, a student just had 3 dots and paired it with the number 3. I layed them next to each other and pointed and said “Which one is/has more?” And the student pointed to the number symbol 3. I did this with the first student and so I was curious to see if all students thought this…and sure enough they did! This was surprising with they knew to pair the numbers together as equal, but then thought for some reason the number was “more.” This intrigues me to research more, and find out why students think this. As I found the students thought this, I tried to show how they mean the same. Eventually, students caught on….but my question is still why do they think this initially?

From here, I will continue to explore this and see if this has the potential to be our focus question.

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