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2015 Advanced Institute

Key Ideas
1) Writing to Learn

2) Specific writing-to-learn strategies

3) Two quotes worth considering

4) Writing to Learn benefits

As part of the 2005 cohort, I prepared a
demo on writing to learn. I continued to
build on that foundation by using the
strategy in my science classes. I became
interested in how I might adapt/renew
the strategy in my math classes.

-ask students to write you a short note
on the back of a homework, quiz, or test
about the difficulties they are having.
-ask students to compare and contrast
different procedures
-use prompts or sentence stems to get
their mathematical thinking started
-include definitions and verbal
descriptions of mathematical processes
on tests, quizzes, and homework

To use math a person needs to know
two things. The two things are the
ability to do the calculations of math, but
also to know what those calculations

This class is both a math class and a
writing class. The answers to questions
posed in mathematics use both numbers
and words.
-writing helps student become aware of
what they know and do not know, can
and cannot do.
-when they write, they connect their
prior knowledge with what they are
-they summarize their knowledge and
give teachers insight into their
-they raise questions about new ideas.
-they reflect on what they know

5) Action steps

a) use the Cornell note style for taking

notes across all classes.
b) write with them to show how the
process works, to show what an effective
summary is, to develop trust and
community around writing in math.
c) provide a checklist/rubric to detail
what is required for both regular and
honors students.
d) use writing prompts as warm ups but
also as exit slips to assess how they are
e) use the document camera to show
what good writing in math looks like.