Working with Words… and Numbers

After an extra day of weekend, we were ready to start off the week with word work. Students set up their new notebook and entered our first list of words… the learner profile traits. In addition to the list, we used our secret agent skills and captured “notes and noticings” on the facing page. Looking at the endings -er, -or, and -ar, and thinking about the parts of speech were some aspects of the words we considered today.  Since this is our setup week, we will be making several entries. After this week, though, entries in our word work journal will take place on Wednesdays. We look forward to growing this multiple source, our vocabularies, and our understanding of words.

Note: One of the headings above has been adjusted to reflect our current practice of working with words. In addition, the main page provides a number of resources that can help inquiring minds explore and become excited about… words. Three of Mrs. Rupp’s favorites are listed below:


We also spent some time exploring estimation. Students were presented with the following question (set in China).

To find the answer, most students initially used column addition with regrouping  (U.S. addition algorithm) to find the EXACT sum, which they determined was GREATER THAN 20,000 kg. When asked if it was necessary to find the EXACT sum, scholarly students considered different points of view and tried a variety of estimation strategies that enabled them to respond to the question effectively and efficiently. Strategies included:

  • front-end estimation
  • close-to estimation
  • rounding (to the thousands and/or hundreds)

As a variety of students shared their strategies with the class, we were able to think about and discuss the effectiveness and efficiency of each option and circumstances when each might be appropriate.

Reflection: Which estimation strategy might you use at the grocery store? Why?


Estimation Strategy: Rounding


Estimation Strategy: Front-End


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