Getting Your Students to Wonder, Want and Wish for More

I believe math is the universal language and that everybody would want to speak it. Okay, maybe I am being a bit ideal, but I might as well set a goal and aim high! So, I guess all I have to do is figure out how to move this idea forward.

How do I get my students to see the world through a math lens? How do I get them to engage in mathematical thinking? How do I get them to persevere? Maybe, these websites offer some ideas.

1. Visual Patterns:  This website has hundreds of patterns that give students an opportunity to engage at any level of math. Students can figure out how many items are in each iteration; they can generalize to create an equation; they can even represent the pattern in multiple ways from a table, to a graph, to a rule.    How many puppies are in figure 43?

2.   Challenging Math Problems Worth Solving:  This website offers intriguing math problems ranging from kindergarten to high school. There are documents for students to record their attempts, what they learned from each attempt and how their strategy will change on the next attempt.

 Linear Function from Table of Values:
Directions: Use the numbers 1 through 9, at most one time each, to create a table of          values that represent a linear function.( Source: Robert Kaplinsky)

3.  101 Questions:  This website provides random pictures and asks the question:  “What is the first question that comes to your mind?”  As students begin formulating questions, you can capture their ideas and select one to explore more with your class. Or, challenge your students to answer their own questions. Even better, you can direct their ideas and have them begin using the universal language of mathematics as they create their questions!


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