Smart Questions

August 19, 2012

Found at Fast Times of a Middle School Math Teacher (via High Heels in High School):

SMART Questions

  1. I don’t understand ___________ part or step.
  2. I don’t understand ___________ vocabulary word.
  3. Could you repeat ____________ part or step?
  4. How did you get _____________?
  5. Why did you do _____________ (multiplication, division, addition, subtraction, etc.)?
  6. What part of the story problem let you know to do that?
  7. What helped you understand that problem (notes, key words, equations, etc.)?
  8. Do you understand how we got this answer?
  9. Where did you get ___________ (side length, page number, note, etc.)?
  10. Could you clarify the problem?
  11. Did we …?

She then printed out these questions and put them on those display holders you see at restaurants, so that students could always see them as they worked in their groups. She said that:

After about a month of using these sentence stems I started to notice that it seems to take a while to find a question. Having 11 different questions is a bit overwhelming. If you think about using this strategy you might want to limit the card to 5 or 6 questions and have the same questions on both sides.

And I agree. I do like the idea of giving kids something to say besides, “I don’t get it,” or “IDK”.

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