Thursday, May 07, 2009

Teaching Following Directions

I think one of the reasons I was good at taking tests was because I knew how to follow written directions. It seems like it would be really easy to follow directions, right? Except that when you've been in school for a really long time it is easy to assume you know what the directions are asking (haven't you solved similar problems a hundred times?) so you jump into the problem without reading every last word. Another problem with following directions is comprehension. Some problems from puzzle books (in this last post) are excellent following direction primers. If you don't follow the directions to a T, the solution won't work. And because they are puzzle books for fun (especially for kids), the solution usually includes a saying or picture the kids are likely to know so when it is wrong, it is obvious. I love anything that helps with self-correction!

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