Building Equations Using Padlet.com
Type of Technology: Internet
SAMR Model Rating: Redefinition
Grade level: 9 (or any level)
Subject area: Math (Padlet can be used in any content area)
Description of the lesson taught: Are you concerned about your x? You should be. There are an infinite number of things that can happen to your x – especially when building equations in Integrated Math 1. You could follow the Mathematics Assessment Project’s Formative Assessment Lesson called Building and Solving Equations 1 and spend a good 1 or 2 hours of your time preparing cut up tiles for your students to use as manipulatives in competing the lesson, or you could change up the scene and use Padlet.com.
Padlet is a free website that you can use to create and post information to a wall. You can change the settings on your wall to invite others to see it and give them permission to post things on your wall as well.
So I adapted the MARS lesson I spoke of above using Padlet. I started with a solution, like x=4. See the screenshot below:
The lesson begins with a solution.
Each student accesses the Internet and goes to padlet.com. Once they see your wall they create and post their own equation that has the given solution. To make it even more fun, I asked the math department to submit their equations as well. So x’s were popping up on the wall from other teachers as the students were working. After they had submitted a single step equation, they were asked to submit a two-step equation. Then they were asked to solve someone else’s posted equation to prove that it indeed had the given solution (x=a).
Here’s what it looked like later in the period, with the x=6 solution. You can see that Wendy proved that Mr. Ahlers equation was correct. Not many students got this far as you can see.
There is a feature with Padlet that allows you to approve a post. This is useful in avoiding inappropriate posts, but I found that it slowed down the process and we were not able to make as much progress in the lesson. In the future, I would like to use Padlet again and spice up the lesson with even more requirements on the part of the students, like submitting media with their posts. It might also be interesting to have students from one class work on a Padlet wall in live time with another class as a way to challenge each other or collaborate on a given task.
Overall, Padlet is a great way for students to brainstorm, collaborate and share ideas. Doing the math in a different way makes it fun and engaging for the students. Students get to see the work of others and are able to interact with them in ways that were never possible without the technology. So in summary, as you can see, there are a lot of things that can happen to your x. You just need 30 or so students and Internet access to keep your x in check!