With each problem, I asked the students for “private think time.” I wanted them to think through each problem before discussing it with a partner. Even as adult learners we need quiet time to process what is being asked of us. Only once the partners were through discussing did I ask for a whole group discussion. The partner time is especially good for students who are unsure of themselves and can work out their thoughts with the partner without having the eyes of the whole class yet. Only the students who are ready, and comfortable doing so, will be asked to share with the whole group.

When Charlotte answered the question about where 2/3 came from, I asked someone else to explain her answer. I said that I did that because not everyone could hear her. The truth is I wanted another explanation from a different student. She was correct, but students often understand more if they hear the explanation in a variety of ways, and not just from the teacher.

With each problem, I asked the students for “private think time.” I wanted them to think through each problem before discussing it with a partner. Even as adult learners we need quiet time to process what is being asked of us. Only once the partners were through discussing did I ask for a whole group discussion. The partner time is especially good for students who are unsure of themselves and can work out their thoughts with the partner without having the eyes of the whole class yet. Only the students who are ready, and comfortable doing so, will be asked to share with the whole group.

When Charlotte answered the question about where 2/3 came from, I asked someone else to explain her answer. I said that I did that because not everyone could hear her. The truth is I wanted another explanation from a different student. She was correct, but students often understand more if they hear the explanation in a variety of ways, and not just from the teacher.