‘Would you rather…’ activity – using Oracy to explore mathematical ideas

Here is another Oracy activity that can really help your children develop their mathematical talk. ‘Would you rather’ questions can encourage the children to develop their thinking about key mathematical concepts.

If you were teaching, for example, shape and you wanted to focus on the differences between 2D and 3D shapes you could use a ‘would you rather’ question. You would firstly see what the children have noticed and secondly see what ideas they have. Give them sentence stems and key words to use in their discussion. You will be able to focus the discussion more so, than if you leave this to chance.

Take a look at this question…

A ‘would you rather…’ activity style question can reveal what children understand about a particular concept.

The discussion surrounding this question would inevitably give you insight as to what the children understood about 2D and 3D shapes. If they noticed that a cube has many square faces this would enable you to tick off some key objectives. Giving a sentence stem and scaffolding the talk will undoubtedly add to the quality of the talk. You can also give the children some key vocabulary to ensure they are using the correct terminology.

Here is another idea…

‘Would you rather…’ activity that delves deeper into the understanding of triangles. This can be used as a mini assessment task.

This example could be used to discuss triangles and in doing so you could assess how much the children have learnt about triangles. What are their misconceptions and what have they not taken on board yet. These type of questions can be used as mini assessments to ascertain understanding within a unit of work.

Check out my earlier post about ‘would you rather…’ activities and how they can be used.

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