Table of Contents

Unit 3: Reasoning and Explaining (MP2 and MP3)

Selecting a Significant Task to Initiate Conjectures

Time to Read

The featured lesson presented students with a "significant problem designed to engage them ... and elicit conjectures" (Clements, 2004).

Building on Ball and Shifter's odd and even work with students, the instructional conjecture was that if students viewed a video of another 5th-grade student's misconception of odd and even, they would be motivated to develop an argument to help the student clarify her understanding. In turn, the class would develop a common definition that would become part of the classroom's public knowledge.

A video of Emily was filmed immediately after she successfully participated in a textbook lesson about even numbers ending in 0, 2, 4, 6, 8. In the video, she demonstrated that although she was successful in the textbook lesson about even numbers, she continued to hold on to a misunderstanding about what “even” means.

Time to View

Watch the video in which Emily's cases/examples seemed "reasonable" to the 5th-grade audience, causing her classmates to question their understanding of odd and even numbers.

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The movie caused greater disequilibrium among students than was anticipated. Emily’s flawed reasoning greatly influenced her peers and their fragile understanding of odd and even numbers became evident. This discovery enabled the teacher to adjust the content focus for teaching reasoning practices during the school year.

Time to Reflect

In your Metacognitive Journal, identify the cases that Emily shared.



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