This is a funny title for a post because I have to say that this math book hasn’t “changed” my teaching exactly, but it has opened my eyes to how we can simplify our teaching.

I’m reading Building Mathematical Comprehension: Using Literacy Strategies to Make Meaning by Laney Sammons. I chose to read this book because with all the demands in our teaching profession, I was seeking a way to simplify things. We cannot get everything done in a day, a week or even in a school year, so I keep thinking that there has to be a way to integrate things so that we aren’t going crazy every day.

Now literacy and math are not the same. But they have similarities, check this out:

The entire book focuses on ways to use literacy strategies in math. And when you read it, you’ll be thinking “Oh my gosh! This just makes sense!”

One thing I’m going to try this year as a math coach, is to model some problem solving lessons in classrooms. In this book she talks about using comprehension strategies before, during and after solving a problem. Since math truly is all about problem solving, I’m envisioning an anchor chart adapted from my reading (pg. 35-38). I think as we work through problems, it may help students get “unstuck”. It’ll look something like this:

I say that it’ll look “something” like this, because I want to come up with the anchor chart WITH the students. I think doing a problem as a whole class (and using a think-aloud strategy) would help them see the kind of thinking that should be going on in your mind while problem solving.

This book has even more literacy strategies that you can use in your math classroom. Using some of the same vocabulary in your math and literacy blocks can help students make great connections!

To win a copy of this book, you will have to enter by clicking the link below.

There are a bunch of us talking about great books that have changed our teaching, so don’t forget to check out Mr. Elementary Math’s book, he is next in this blog hop.

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I need to read this book! I love the idea of using literacy strategies in math because so many teachers are more comfortable with literacy than they are with math!

Tara

The Math Maniac

Wow, thank you so much for sharing this book. I teach kindergarten in a dual language program and my students only receive direct literacy instruction in English. Finding ways to connect and integrate literacy and math is one of my main goals as a dual language teacher, but I never thought of approaching the connection in this way. As readers and as mathematicians, we really do use similar strategies to go about solving problems and approaching new tasks. Thank you again so much for sharing this book. I look forward to reading it!

Great book! I can’t wait to read it and then share it with my teachers!

Jamie aka MissMathDork!

My wife is a literacy coach and we are always talking about the connection between math and literacy. Great book choice!

Greg

Mr Elementary Math Blog

Would love to have this book!!

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Just purchased this book and I’m really excited to see the parallels between programs. It seems my students are having the hardest time with word problems and I think this will help a lot. What are your experiences?