During our math team meeting this week, I shared with the group the Filling Glasses problem. We were not allowed to write anything, just talk with our partner on matching glasses to four unusually shaped glasses with the graphs that best describe the height of the water in the glass over time. We spent about 10 minutes talking with a partner and then the pairs shared out with the whole group and we discussed whether we agreed or not, and justified our responses.
I really enjoyed this problem for a few reasons: (1) although it was annoying at first, not being about to write anything really made me think about how I communicated my thoughts to my partner, (2) its not a "typical" kind of problem, yet totally real-life based, (3) I felt like I got a lot from listening to my colleagues comments. My co-teacher liked this problem so much that he and I decided to use it as a warm-up for our CTT class one day to see how that would go.
What am I learning about collaboration?
The math problems that we have been doing have been a great way to "even the playing field" during our team meetings because they make all of us responsible for sharing. Although I have gotten better at it, there have been many lessons with my scholars, where the bell rings in the middle of the scholars working, and the lesson really has no final share-out. Being mindful of these problems have really emphasized to me the importance of bringing a lesson (or a problem) back together at the end and the share out main ideas.