Hi-Ho-Hi-Ho it’s off to grade tests I go…

I will be spending the next three school days grading N.Y.S. Mathematics Exams. Tomorrow is fourth grade, then fifth and on Tuesday sixth. Time well spent?!?!?! For the students sake, I hope every student hits a home-run. But in the end, it was, is, and will continue to be about the students learning. Wherever they are at, it is my responsibility to take them to the next level.

Just out of curiosity is it more important to know how to pick the right answer to:

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or be able to work through a problem such as:

The Field Trip Problem (from Catherine Twomey FosnotContexts in Learning):

A fifth-grade class went on field trip. They took four different cars. The school provided each group with heroes (subs, hoagies, wedges in other parts of the country). The subs were cut and shared as follows:

  • Group 1 had 4 people and shared 3 heroes
  • Group 2 had 5 people and shared 3 heroes
  • Group 3 had 5 people and shared 4 heroes
  • Group 4 had 8 people and shared 7 heroes

When the students returned from the trip, they were talking about the sandwiches and they felt that the way the school handed them out was not fair. Did everyone get the same amount of sandwich?

What do you think: Will students get more out of the first or the second problem? Will they take away understanding that will last with the first or the second problem? Which is easier to measure? Which is messy? Which gives the students and the educators more to work with?