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Sunday, October 27, 2013

Challenge #3 MTBos Estimation 180

       This week I looked over the challenges on the MTBoS. I went to a lot of the websites just to see what was available. I have to be honest not every one of them speak to me. I don't usually have a question when I go on 101 Questions, but I do enjoy reading the questions that people with inquiring minds have. I figure I am learning by reading their questions. 
        I want to comment on Estimation 180. I started this, this year with my pre-algebra students. They really seem to enjoy it. When students share their estimates I do not comment, I just call on students and after 5-6 students have shared their estimate with their reasoning I will click on the answer. They get so excited when they are spot on. I have to remind them that if they are close then that is great you don't have to be exact to be successful. 
        The classes that I really need to do this with is my Math 7 classes. I have been having trouble getting them to just complete a 3 problem warm-up in a timely manner so adding Estimation 180 just feels like missing more math time. But I do know that these students really need it. My goal is to start it with math 7 classes this week and find a way to build it in my daily schedule. If you haven't tried it your students will love it. If it really catches on Mr. Stadel may have to make a 6th grade, 7th grade and 8th  grade version (or whatever sequential grades are using it in a school) so students are not seeing the same ones year after year. 
Thank you to Mr. Stadel for sharing this with us. My students are learning and improving  their math sense daily.
   Confession time: We have been doing estimation 180 since the second week of school. We may miss a day here or there because of testing etc...  Last week I was asking students for their estimates (I can't for the life of me remember which one it was) But they were really out there. I slipped and said to some crazy estimation students didn't you see yesterday? Are you basing your estimation on what you saw yesterday? It was one of those things like how many papers on a roll and the next day how many in the package and their estimations made no sense at all based on the information they had learned the previous day. I try not to comment until after all students have shared and we have checked the answer. Most days we just move onto the next thing but other days I pause and we talk about the estimation and students share their victories or struggles. Thankfully I have not slipped more than once or twice and my students all still want to share their estimations so I have not ruined it.  But honestly some days I just wonder what were you thinking???