After using the Generate-Sort-Connect-Elaborate thinking routine, from Making Thinking Visible, as a review exercise for my IB Mathematical Studies Students, I decided to introduce the new unit with the Claim, Support, Question routine.
This fitted in well with what we were going to be learning about: graphs of exponential functions. Rather than me telling them, or them finding out by using graphing software, I wanted them to make their own predictions about the graph of y = a^x for values of a above 1, and then between 0 and 1.
I started by asking them to consider a table of values for y = 2^x, and then make some claims about the graph, and offer support for their claims. The discussion did yield some good conjectures, and the supporting facts were solid. These students even came up with claims that would make a calculus teacher’s day: “The graph will increase more and more.”
However, there is one gaping hole in the chart. No questions. These students are not wondering about the graph beyond the facts they can see. Clearly this is an area they need to develop. I will be watching to see if more work with thinking routines improves this, or whether the problem is deeper.