Implementing Lesson Study Summary
Monday - Friday, July 2 - 6, 2007
We began with a presentation from Gail on the essence of Lesson Study. In summary, there are four main components to the lesson study. An introduction includes a "hook", ties in experiences of students to activate their learning through a question. The second part of the process is identifying the key question followed by student solutions. Finally, a lesson study involves summing up the lesson with connections and highlights of the lesson.
In this short period of three weeks, we will be completing a lesson study from start to at least the first revision of the lesson. We will work on the pre-lesson preparation during the first two weeks. In the second week, a group of "test subjects" will be "taught" our lesson as a trial run for revision before traveling to Park City High School, where we will be teaching our lesson to high school geometry students.
Important considerations are the characteristics of the lesson. How will it be delivered? Will it include the use of the blackboard? What sort of language and word choice will be used? Consider taking care with symbols used.
Our first main goal will be to flush out the pre-lesson process, which includes defining the goal, mathematical objective, relation to curriculum, and place in the lesson. To begin, we brainstormed topics relating to geometry and others more general. Following are the topics we discussed. Before we left, we narrowed the topics to a few that related to area, logic, proof, communication of ideas, real world application, and explanation.
Brainstorming Session for Topic of Lesson Study
Participants: Gail, Joyce, Gloria, Oscar, Jim, Judy, Rudy, Rosemary, Anastasia, Connie
In continuation from yesterday's brainstorming session, we began with further exploration of the geometry topic and problem that we will explore for our lesson study. The purpose today is to come up with a defined objective for our lesson. What will the students be able to do? What will they learn? Several problem ideas were discussed, with an emphasis on context and mathematical objectives.
We want a lesson that contributes in a substantive way to advancing their knowledge. Think of this problem as the opener or closing problem. We broke up into smaller groups to develop our ideas of what the lesson might look like. Each group shared about the 20 minute break out session.
Hook - Comparing shadow shapes broken down into tangrams. Can include the school
mascot and the rival school mascot. Which shape has the biggest area?
Transitional activity, areas of several shapes (triangle, rectangle, trapezoid,
To think about:
Participants: Gail, Joyce, Gloria, Oscar, Jim, Judy, Rudy, Rosemary, Anastasia
The Hook. What are we looking to do in our hook? Is the hook more appropriate to our objective as a geometric shape that will be broken apart by groups, or is the geometric probability problem using cups and straws a better hook? If we use the probability hook, should we revisit our objective. Would the new objective involve geometric probability, with area being a subgoal and a stepping stone to find the probability?
Our geometry students:
Our direction so far is sort of a synthesis of several geometric concepts and objectives.
Concern: Will students know enough about circles for the purpose of the lesson? What are the tools we will have in the classroom?
Possible Anticipated Student Responses:
Maximize: Contestant of games with cups
TSW be able to apply areas of common shapes to find areas of weird shapes. (weird and not irregular... composite shapes)
If we continue with probability, will we want to incorporate the experimental probability?
Idea for researching this problem: Use the problem of the four cups as a five minute short. Observe reactions of teachers as part of our anticipating student response.
Participants: Gail, Joyce, Jim, Anastasia, Judy, Oscar, Rudy, Gloria, Connie, Rosemary
This morning, our problem was presented as a morning short to the PCMI SSTP group of teachers. The problem was presented with modeling of four cups and then participants were asked to figure the probability using trials or other methods with four cups. Cups stacked at tables were used by some groups. Our working group members saw many groups start with different arrangements, some with a square configuration and some with two spaces and center cups touching.
How will we lead them to four cups? Do we want to show them the three cups first, or will this sway their responses?
Assumption has to be made about the problem, such as with probability. What is included as part of the board? Perhaps establish a point system, with a certain point for the cups, and a certain point for the inner space, leaving the outer space valued at zero.
Goal in the next three days:
We discussed the questions from the previous day, analyzing their wording and the order we may consider incorporating them into the lesson. Two main questions we debated were:
To approach the task of developing our lesson, we worked on large chart paper to develop solutions to the problem we are going to present. Exploration includes solutions using three, four, or six cups.
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This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under DMS-0940733 and DMS-1441467. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.