Last week's cooperative maths activity.
Awesome maths talk, vocabulary learning, and farming education!
To launch the problem (start it off with a bang and get the students interested), we turned grass into dry matter. Using the staffroom microwave, some freshly picked (but not very tender) grass, and about 20 minutes of microwaving, we turned the grass into a dry, brittle, lighter, feed that contained no moisture = dry matter! Our grass was approximately 20% dry matter.
When we start a story problem we firstly write down everything we know. Then we look for the numbers and information which may be important. We worked out one question at a time.
This photograph shows our working out of 12ha with 2300kg/dm/ha available, fenced in half and fed to 2000 cows. In mixed ability groups we worked out our answers and shared our working with the class. Our final step was to look for links between the different groups' workings to see connections in our thinking and most importantly - the BIG MATHEMATICAL IDEAS!