Home Grade LevelHigh School Grades 9-12 (Ages 13-18) Math Problems that Unlock Student Thinking

Math Problems that Unlock Student Thinking

by Vicki Davis
Published: Last Updated on

Filled with dread, some math teachers have a problem. As they give problems to students to work their students become problems. Behavior problems. Boredom problems. Sometimes the problem is that students aren't excited by the problems. However, math can be exciting. The “Open Middle” math problem format is NOT talking about middle school math, although it applies to middle, high school, elementary, and even college math just the same. Robert Kaplinsky, a math teacher and author on the “open middle math” talks about how math teachers can unlock student thinking and interest in how problems are posed to students. Busy math teachers can listen to this quick episode to get an introduction to open middle math and see if they want to dive deeper. Math can be exciting!

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Listen to Robert Kaplinsky explain open middle math and unlocking student thinking in math class

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Get Credit! Some schools, districts, and organizations allow credit for listening to podcasts. Whether they do or don't, to get the most out of listening you can use this Podcast PD Template Hyperdoc. Just make a copy and adapt it for your use or print it. If you don't have Google Docs, just use this PDF.


Check out these resources from Robert for math teachers. Robert says, “I created these free Depth of Knowledge matrices that teachers love: https://robertkaplinsky.com/tag/dok-matrix/

Add Robert Kaplinsky to your PLN (Bio As Submitted)

Robert Kaplinsky has worked in education since 2003 as a classroom teacher, teacher specialist for Downey Unified School District, instructor for the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and presenter at conferences around the world. He created the #ObserveMe movement, wrote the book Open Middle Math is president of Grassroots Workshops and co-founder of the website https://www.openmiddle.com/.

Blog: https://robertkaplinsky.com

Twitter: @robertkaplinsky

Instagram: @robert_kaplinsky

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/robertkaplinsky

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/robertkaplinsky/

Disclosure of Material Connection: This is a “sponsored podcast episode.” The company who sponsored it compensated me via cash payment, gift, or something else of value to include a reference to their product. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I believe will be good for my readers and are from companies I can recommend. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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The Cool Cat Teacher Blog
Vicki Davis writes The Cool Cat Teacher Blog for classroom teachers everywhere