Teaching approaches: Exploring and noticing structure
Many numbers can be expressed as the difference of two perfect squares. What do you notice about the numbers you CANNOT make?This lesson idea is about exploring and noticing structure(ta).
The collection of NRICH activities are designed to develop students capacity to work as a mathematician. Exploring, questioning, working systematically, visualising, conjecturing, explaining, generalising, justifying, proving are all at the heart of mathematical thinking.
This particular resource has been adapted from an original NRICH resource. NRICH promotes the learning of mathematics through problem solving. NRICH provides engaging problems, linked to the curriculum, with support for teachers in the classroom. Working on these problems will introduce students to key mathematical process skills. They offer students an opportunity to learn by exploring, noticing structure and discussing their insights, which in turn can lead to conjecturing, explaining, generalising, convincing and proof.
The Teachers’ Notes provided focus on the pedagogical implications of teaching a curriculum that aims to provoke mathematical thinking. They assume that teachers will aim to do for students only what they cannot yet do for themselves. As a teacher, consider how this particular lesson idea can provoke mathematical thinking. How can you support students' exploration? How can you support conjecturing, explaining, generalising, convincing and proof?.