My first I-THINK I Can Problem Solve activity!  As I expected, it was kind of a disaster.  The students are new to this type of thinking and responding, and I most certainly am new to this kind of teaching.  But, I expected that, so I just focused on what I was learning to do next time.

The main thing was that no matter how much scaffolding I did, the students did not understand the question, which also explains why some (and some of my brightest) seemed disengaged.  They thought the Coconut Problem was a simple question (7 coconuts times 3 sailors plus the 3 thrown to the monkeys is 24), so they stopped thinking and processing.  It was only when I went around and questioned them (How are you accounting for the coconuts the sailors stole?) that they started to see the scope of the problem.

I also found it difficult to explain what I meant by “different methods to solve.”  In third period, I gave examples of write an equation, draw a picture, guess and check.  So they all parroted that without understanding what those things meant.  In fourth period I gave the general example of “Three methods for gassing up my car would be: go to a gas station, siphon some gas from someone else, refine my own gasoline.”  That seemed to confuse things even more.

I definitely will keep doing this.  My goal is twice a month.  Hopefully, together, both the students and I will get better at it.

Also, I am out of my orthopedic “boot” and back in shoes today!


One thought on “I-THINK

  1. I’m glad to hear that you tried I-THINK. I can sympathize with the disaster comment. When we first implemented I-THINK in our classrooms, (including the ones in the article) it was a disaster as well. Students are not accustomed to that way of thinking or expressing their thought process verbally or in writing. I hope you have continued to implement the framework. I assure you it gets easier with time and practice. If you have any questions please let me know.

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