Wednesday, December 19, 2012

More conjectures

Z. today made a connection to T.'s conjecture!

We were talking about the number 69 if it was odd or even. Z. said it was odd and I asked him how he knew. He said it was odd because 9 is odd and he knew that from the puiblic record we made of odd, even, odd, even...
So I wrote 79 on the board and asked him if it was odd or even. He thought for a bit and then told me it was odd. I asked hoow he knew and he said it was because of T.'s conjecture about 9 is behind the other number. I asked if he meant in the end place by saying "behind" and he said yes!

Whoo Hoo!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Math studio blog

Please post a student conjecture or "near conjecture" before December 21. Or you can post a question you have about supporting students as they try to make conjectures. "

Ok, don't fall over in shock but I am actually having some fun with Number Corner and Odd and Even.  They are conjecturing like crazy- almost like a competition.  I still struggle with when it moves to a generalization and not all the students get it or remember it.

We started examining everyday if the days in school and days in the month are odd or even.  The first conjecture/ generalization that came out of it was we decided 10 is always even so we don't have to look at the 10 sticks in days in school to figure out if the number is odd or even.

Of course we had to establish that even numbers always have partners and odd numbers do not. (Generalization, right?)

At first everyone one would come up and use the magnet squares to prove if the number was odd or even by matching partners.  Then, Oh excitement!

One day M. and M. (no pun intended) built on each other and came up with the conjecture that every other number will be even.  We made a public record and it is proving to be true.  (Generalization?)

Then T. conjectured that if we count in 2's all those numbers are even.  Again we made a public record that we add to and it is true.  (Generalization?)

Then Z.  conjectured that 4 is always even.  I let that one ride for a couple of days to see what the students would add on to that.

T. conjectured that when a number ENDS in 5 it is always odd.

I let that one sit to see if Z would think of his conjecture a little differently.  He didn't so the next day I asked him about  the number 54 and if it was odd or even.  He was so stunned.  At first he said odd.  I mentioned his conjecture.  Major disequilibrium!

I gave some think time to see if he could work through it.  (Meanwhile the majority of the class was wiggling around like worms in a coffee can.)  I should have waited but I was losing my class.  So I asked if anyone could add to what I asked.

That's when T. said the number has to end in 4 to be even.  I walked the class through breaking 54 into the ten sticks, reminding them that we had already decided that 10's were always even so we didn't have to look at the 5.  I asked Z then if he agreed with what T said and he did.

The next conjecture came from M. again.
"If you add two odd numbers together the answer will always be an even number."

I don't know about you but I was really impressed with that!  We are checking it everyday to see if it is true.  (When do we have enough data to say it is a generalization?)  I'm waiting for someone now to conjecture about what happens if you add two even numbers together?  If you add an odd or even?

My white board is covered with our conjectures and public records we have created to use to keep track of our data.

Now when I ask them if a number is odd or even that are not just using the answer that it has a partner.  They use the if you count in two's record and every other number is even record too!

I find that I could go on and on in Number Corner on this conjecturing stuff!   Wait till I have time to write about what we are doing with numbers in a game we play everyday.  Introduced a bit of multiplication and telling how many are in our class and if it is odd or even!!!!!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


A sword, Cavalry born,
buried in sliver strands
of buffalo grass.  Fallen,
from a running soldier's hand,
relaxed in death,
a self appointed bullet ,
lodged in a face
down, buried in a rutted gully,
2000 years before.

A man of Custer's 7th  cavalry
 with man's 2 edge sword.
Blood rusted in prairie dirt,
forgotten by time
and found by a wayward sheep herder,
Wild Uncle Bill's sword.

The heft of two edged swords
cleaves joints, marrow, arrogance, greed,
sinews of sin- dissected
in a thrust-
a parry-
a jab.
Separating  the sin from self,
flesh from bone.
Just as the heft of God's Word
is piercing and discerning thoughts- intentions.
Stripping all pretense from our souls.

We are the dead on the prairie.
Our bodies bleed out, cradled
in the soft embrace of greasy grass.
The dead pass way,
the sword has done it's job.
The words remains.

We can do nothing for ourselves.
We are the sheep upon the hill,
stumbling over half buried swords
and artifacts of ancient battles.
Losing ourselves in canyon brush,
juicy bits we spy on other sides of fence.

We are the one the the shepherd breaks
to keep us from ourselves.

Friday, December 7, 2012

My Allie girl

Alli started having seizures last night so I had to make the decision to put her to sleep.  I knew it was time and I was there till the end.  I miss her so much already.

Pastor Cwirla comforted me with this :

William M. Cwirla It's the hardest part of having a pet. And the most loving. They rely on us to care for them. In the wild, they would go off and die somewhere or be killed. I think the bond between man and animal is a little vestige of Paradise lost and of the coming new creation where lion and lamb will once again lie down in peace.


Trying to write in meter.  This is difficult.

Radiates the wire of a lonely fence,
strung round the field, a circuit to commence.
Sun burnt girls and sentential dog in rows
of chin high rusty wheat. the cattle low
a sobering moan, the wind caught boughs.
The past, in furrows of earthly plows,
a heavenly hum, a spider's bite,
a father's warning to make it right.
The sun dead on a hill, leads the flight.

It's been awhile....

I had to put my Allie girl to sleep last week and it devastated me.  It was time and I am glad that I was there for her.

I have dreaded this time for so long.  I knew it was coming.  I did not know how I was going to go through it.  But I did and I'm glad I was there for her.

She starting having seizures, my vet was closed and I had to take her to the ER vet.  They were wonderful.  I talked her through her death.  I could not even tell when her breath left her.  The vet told me when she was dead.  I loved her to her death.  I love her now.

The hardest thing I had to do was the best thing I could do for her.  The vet was compassionate as was the rest of the staff.

I miss my goofy Allie seal girl so much.

The next night, in streaming rain, we buried her besides the Applegate river in the dark.  Susie, my CLA, and Jessica, my co- teacher, shoveled dirt upon her frozen body. We stood and then talked of students and life, growth and anger, hurts and madness, sadness and joy.  That wet dark night embraced the body of my Allie girl while her spirit in love ran free.

I love that dog.  I loved that dog.  I miss that dog.  Queenie misses that dog.  There is a hole in my life where that dog used to be.

I am alone with my 14 year old Queenie beanie.  She seems depressed.  We walk together.