3-Act Task: Finding a Balance




Act 1

What do you notice?

What do you wonder?

Act 2

How can we make it balanced?

Ten Frame (Representational)



Ten Frame Equation (Representational → Abstract)



Equation (Abstract)


Act 3


4 thoughts on “3-Act Task: Finding a Balance

  1. Andrew! This is awesome.

    I’d love to know more about how students are supported to make sense of the information presented in Act 2. What do they need to know and understand about what’s being conveyed in the progression of 10-frames in order to use the information to help answer the question?


  2. If I were doing this in the classroom, I would pause the video just before Andrew puts the weight on the 7. I’m certain kids will wonder about the question, “How can we make it balanced?” Then, kids can solve for all the possible combinations of ten. When students offer responses (even if they are out of order) the teacher can record them in order to reveal a pattern/structure of the combinations that equal ten. For example:
    0 + 10
    1 + 9
    2 + 8
    3 + 7
    4 + 6
    5 +5
    6 + 4
    7 + 3
    8 + 2
    9 + 1
    10 + 0
    If the first response you got from a student was 2 and 8 you would just leave space above it for the other possible combinations. In the end, you would shift focus from the answers of the problem to what they notice about the numbers that were recorded. And discuss how knowing that pattern can help them. The next day you could build on that understanding with a follow up task with a different context and watch to see if anyone used that knowledge.

    Another idea about the video would be to record the same video, but with the equabeam turned around so we can’t see the numbers in act 1. That would create the need for the students to know what those numbers are and then act 2 could be the video that shows the numbers which gives them what they need to know.
    It would be cool to have act 3 in video form too. Kids tend to have more excitement and “believe” the answer more when the see the action in a video format.

    Thanks, Andrew!


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