We were finally back to working with the kindergarten students this week at Longfellow, and we have began to focus more on our research angle. So starting now, we will aim our focus towards the number sense skills students learn in kindergarten, and the success rate of these skills using manipulative’s and technology. On Tuesday, the teacher had a new assessment to work off of so I could see where students are, and by this assessment I could get a good idea of which students would be helpful to focus on for our research. Since I had the iPod’s to work with, I decided to work with the more advanced students on the Word Problems game. There were a handful of students who only needed help with word problems, but since we had not decided which direction to go for our research at the time I went back, I wanted to give time to students who do not need additional help on their number sense skills. Understanding word problems and how to solve them is important for students to know, but it is that next step that these students were more prepared for than the others. Most of the students who used the Word Problem game only needed my help to read the problems, but they were able to listen carefully to the key words such as ‘more’ or ‘take away’ in order to know what to do. It was amazing to watch these students succeed with the problem solving skill in this activity on the iPod because a simple look at the assessment results of some other students show just how vast the ability levels differ. It will be exciting to see which learning techniques work best for students from various ability levels in each number sense skill category. As long as students have a base knowledge of the number sense skills such as number identification and counting, the activities will become useful for the students, but the extent to which the activities become useful will vary for each student.
Posted on April 5th, 2011 by Maggie Blackburn
Filed under: Margaret Blackburn