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Math talk used to be considered an oxymoron. I guess people thought if you’re working out a sum, then you should probably keep your mouth shut so your brain can work.
But guess what? Math talk helps your brain.
Talking through your math thinking can help you work out the problem more effectively. Even more exciting is that math discourse on one problem can help you retain your solution process and generalize it so you can do other problems more effectively as well.
Encouraging talk about math in the classroom is easier with question stems.
We worked with our friends at Ready Classroom Mathematics to develop a poster you and your students can use to get everyone talking about their math thinking. You’ll find:
Questions to ask when you’re:
- solving a problem
- thinking about your answer
- coming up with a new idea
Ways to answer when you’re:
- sharing your process
- explaining your thinking
- suggesting a new idea