Saturday, September 13, 2014

My Students, Team Tasks and Mathematical Discourse

I have blogged in detail about my classroom structure and how I implement my "Team Tasks". In the Team Tasks that I have designed it is not just about an answer, but more importantly it is about the mathematical discussion, and the reasoning and justification.

My students have done a couple of Team Tasks so far this year, and they are starting to learn how to work collaboratively.  My Team Tasks are not independent worksheets that are done in a group setting.  The Teams work together and are to discuss all aspects of the Task as a Team.  My students are expected to do the Task exactly as it says and each Team Member is expected to be the Team Mathematician when it is their turn.  It is the Task Manager's job to guide the Task and to make sure it is being done as expected.  The Teams are to be doing all aspects of the Task at the same time.  No Team Member is allowed work a head of the rest of the Team.

It is a lot of work to train the students how to work effectively during "Team Tasks" in the beginning. I spend a lot of time reiterating my expectations throughout the "Team Tasks" and modeling how it should look.  I tell my students that I want to hear the academic vocabulary and I want to see the Teams working together.   This part of the Team Tasks still needs work, but the students are off to a good start.... :o)

As I walk around and listen to the Team Discussions throughout the Team Task allows me to CFU and to intervene if their is any misconceptions, encourage and motivate when they struggle and to compliment when they are understanding and explaining it well... :o)

My Team Tasks require the students to read, reason and write throughout the tasks.  I use color-coding that coordinates with their guided notes to help the students make the connections with the mathematical concepts.

The first Team Task was on Finding the Slope of a Line using Rise/Run.

The second Team Task was on Finding Slope Using Slope Triangles.


  1. I love your idea of Team Tasks as I always have those few students who don't want to participate with their group members.

    Do you possibly have a link to where I could find your two team tasks discussing slope?

    1. Thank You... It does help all students to be accountable... It really does help the students... :o)

      I haven't had a chance yet, but I plan on putting them in my TpT store... Hopefully soon.... :o)