This year, our classroom theme is "Leave Your Mark." What we mean by this is that we are working to create artifacts of our learning that we can share with others, even after we've moved on to middle school.
Our first project for our theme wrapped up this week.The idea: bring math story problems to life by creating "Video Story Problems."
Here's how it worked: students wrote a story problem involving addition and subtraction. I encouraged them to make them rigorous--not just simple, one-step problems. They tested their problems and traded with partners to make sure the problems worked. Then they "traveled" to Curranwood Studios to create their movies. Students added images, recorded audio, and added music soundtracks. Voila, they're ready for the world!
There were a lot of hidden lessons in this project. But one of the biggest ones was about being mindful of your work and paying close attention. Several students made videos in which the story problem didn't make complete sense. In most cases, they left out just one or two words that were needed to understand the problem. But, you learn from mistakes, and we definitely are turning these into "teachable moments."
My overall goal, of course, is to get them to improve when working with word problems. I told them to "picture the situation in their mind, like you're reading a book." A light bulb went off, and I thought of this project, which I had seen done by another teacher whose blog I follow.
I'm working my way through uploading and processing them, but here are two of the first I've got done. Can you solve the problems they're asking?
Kaylen's Video Story Problem: Skittles from Engaging Educators on Vimeo.
Alexandria Video Story Problem: Candy from Engaging Educators on Vimeo.
They sure put a lot of work into videos that are just a few minutes long! It was definitely worth it, and I'm very proud of them. I'll let you know when I have the rest ready and I'll provide a link to them.