Finding Just What You're Looking For

When a math problem is read carelessly or too quickly, students may easily end up solving a problem that isn't part of the question. In mathematics, it is important that teachers emphasize re-reading the question and checking their answer in order to verify that the answer they found actually fits the question posed.

Let's see how Ms. Garcia-Anderson guides her students in solving the

CAHSEE problem that we started this unit with. Throughout the video, you will hear her emphasizing "answer the question" in her speech pattern.


When Ms. Garcia-Anderson brought the students back to the actual Ms. Garcia-Anderson teaching photo question, she asked them to consider whether they were "done." Not all students were confident enough to give a thumbs up, but with additional clarification on the part of Ms. Garcia-Anderson, most students realized that "it's OK to stop now because the question has been answered."

Classroom Clip Reflection:

  • In what ways does Ms. Garcia-Anderson support her students in finding the correct answer?
  • How does she use the thumbs-up/thumbs-down strategy? Why or why not is this an effective strategy?
  • How does she have students validate their thinking?
  • What are the implications for your own work with students?