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EL Support Lesson
Students will be able to find areas of rectangles.
Students will be able to compare and contrast strategies to find area using sentence starters.
- Tell students that you are making some changes to your house and you need some help. In a room upstairs, you'd like to get new carpet and the flooring company is asking for the area of the room. Share that you know the length of one side of the room is 5 feet and the width is 4 feet.
- Lead them through a Think-Pair-Share activity by first asking them to think about the operation they'll need to use to figure out how much new carpet you'll need. Then, have them pair up with a partner to discuss their thoughts. Call on students to share out with the whole group their explanation. Provide a sentence stem to support students, such as "To figure out how much new carpet you'll need, you need to use the operation of ____."
- Go over the Language Objective by reading it aloud and having students repeat it. Explain that there are two specific ways to solve an area problem, and we will discuss them in today's lesson.
Explicit Instruction/Teacher modeling(5 minutes)
- Begin by defining the word strategy as a plan of action to solve a problem.
- Write the problem 5 x 4 = ? from the lesson's Introduction on the board and share that there are two different ways you could solve the problem to find the area of the floor. Tell the class that you want them to decide which one they think is the best strategy to use, and share that they'll be comparing and contrasting the two strategies.
- Display a copy of the Math Madness: It's the Same Area 1 worksheet on the document camera and focus only on the information at the top.
- Point out the first way to approach an area problem. Say, "We could find the area of the floor by counting up unit squares. Would that be a good strategy to use? Do you think it would take me a long time to do that?" Model counting the unit squares in the example at the top of the page, showing that the total is 20 square units. Explain that this strategy was simply counting. Have students turn and talk to a partner to share whether they think that would be a good strategy.
- Direct students' attention to the other approach to an area problem. Say, "We could find the area of the floor by multiplying the length by the width. Would that be a good strategy to use? Do you think it would take me a long time to do that?" Show how to solve the problem using multiplication. Explain how you multiply the length by the width to find the area (i.e., 5 by 4). Your answer is 20 square units. Have students turn and talk to a partner to share whether they think that would be a good strategy.
- Emphasize that the answer is the same in each approach to finding the area of the rectangular space.
Guided Practice(10 minutes)
- Show Part 1 of the Math Madness: It's the Same Area 1 worksheet on the document camera. Go over the instructions for that section, and put students into partnerships.
- Instruct partners to talk about the strategy of counting the unit squares and how useful it is. Provide a sentence starter for their discussion, such as "To find the area with this strategy, I have to ____. The strategy of ____ is helpful in finding the area of a rectangle because ____." Allow students to use whiteboards and whiteboard markers to create a visual representation of their strategy.
- Display Part 2 of the worksheet and have learners talk about the strategy of multiplication and how useful it is. Give students the same sentence starter to support them in their discussion, and encourage them to create visual representations of their strategy on the whiteboards.
- Gather students together and explain that they will now compare and contrast the strategies they have used to find the area of the rectangles. Remind them that when you compare, you determine the things that are the same, and when you contrast, you determine the things that are different.
- Put students into partnerships to compare and contrast the strategies from Part 1 and Part 2 on the worksheet.
- Have partners use the the following sentence starter to compare and contrast the strategies together: "The strategies are similar because ____." and "The strategies are different because ____."
- Scramble the partnerships and have the new partners share what they discussed in their previous discussions. Provide sentence stems to guide their discussion, such as "We noticed that both strategies ____." and "Our group noticed that one strategy ____."
Group work time(10 minutes)
- Put students into A-B partnerships. Tell them that they will talk to their partner about their process for solving a problem to find the area. Instruct Partner A to solve it by counting unit squares, while Partner B solves it using multiplication.
- Distribute a copy of the Math Madness: It's the Same Area 2 worksheet to each student.
- Have Partner A focus on the first problem in Part 1 of the worksheet, while Partner B focuses on the first problem in Part 2 of the worksheet. Present a new scenario to students in which they'll need to find the area. Say, "My friend Jacob is buying furniture. Jacob needs to know the area of one of the bedrooms so the furniture fits. The room is a rectangle with a length of 7 units and a width of 4 units. What is the area?"
- Give partnerships time to solve the problems with their designated strategies, and then have them share their work with each other. Challenge them to compare and contrast the strategies in this situation by looking for similarities and differences.
- Provide learners with support and a reminder of the sentence starters to help them in their discussions.
Additional EL adaptations
- Allow access to reference materials in their home language (L1).
- Have learners repeat instructions and key vocabulary to the teacher.
- Provide a word bank of key terms and phrases for students to use in group and class discussions.
- Group students intentionally based on academic and language needs.
- Allow learners to utilize glossaries and dictionaries for unfamiliar words in story problems.
- Choose advanced ELs to share their ideas first in group and class discussions.
- Have learners repeat instructions and key vocabulary, summarizing important information for the class.
- Give each student an index card and have them reflect on the two strategies. Provide sentence starters to support students as they reflect.
- Pose the following questions and instruct students to answer them in complete sentences.
- What is the biggest difference between the two strategies? (Sentence starter: The biggest difference between the two strategies is ____.)
- Which strategy do you think is the best to use to find the area of a rectangle? Why? (Sentence starter: I think the strategy of ____ is better because ____.)
Review and closing(3 minutes)
- Ask students to pair up and share their responses from the Exit Ticket. Call on a few nonvolunteers to share their responses as well as their partner's.
- Remind students that there are two main strategies to find area, and engage the class in a debate about which is the most efficient and makes the most sense to use when finding the area of a rectangle.