The Egg Tower

As KB students progress in their counting skills we’ve introduced this open ended task that is challenging and allows all students to represent their mathematical thinking in various ways.

Students started by looking at the pictures below and commenting on what they “See, Think, and Wonder”. Then we set off to solve one of their toughest wonderings, “How many EGGS are in the tower”.

I.P. gave the class the idea that they should figure out how many boxes are in the tower first then they can count how many eggs! Each student set off to solve this question in ways that made sense for them.

Students counted 12 eggs in each box. So a lot of their thinking on Day 1 showed their knowledge of different representations of 12.

Another representation of 12. Ss were asked to focus on how they can show their thinking.

This student quickly began representing the eggs and the boxes within the tower, even on day 1

Then students shared their thinking with the class. We came to the conclusion that mathematicians in our class used numbers, words, counting strategies, addition, symbols, and made models to help them figure out the question.

Students have now been working for 5 days to figure out this same question: How Many eggs are in the tower?

As the days go on students changed their representations and the way they showed their thinking. This student drew each egg and the tower on day 2.

Each day students find more information that gets them closer to the answer. Sometimes they start over and use different strategies to help them figure it out. Some choose to work in groups on one day and then by themselves on another day.

No matter how they choose to work our focus is on HOW the mathematicians are thinking and HOW they are showing their thinking and getting it out of their brain. Each day ends with students sharing how they tried to solve the problem. Although we may not get the answer, we are all using our skills, learning new skills from friends and teachers, and are building our stamina as mathematicians.

By the 4th/5th day students moved into making models to represent the tower. Using their knowledge of what they already know about the tower to construct an ACCURATE model.

After each math session students shared their thinking and their findings. Each day we started the task with more information and more ideas then the day before.

Today’s GO WORD is “struggle”. KB students have discussed the importance of struggling to sovle a problem, but continuing to try as a way to build connections between the synapses in our brains. Finding the answer to a problem is not always the most important part and this challenging tasks serves as our reminder. We might not find the number answer to this task, but we are growing our brains every single time we try.

This task requires collaboration a lot of times. Sometimes we need the skills of others to help us progress our thinking. Being social during math allows us to see different perspectives and to build communication skills.

On Day 5 students were encouraged to not only make accurate models of the boxes in the tower, but to also think about representing the eggs on/in the tower so they can get one step closer to solving the problem.

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