- Write a word problem that uses a Divisor, a Dividend, and a Quotient. Identify each of them, describe each of them and describe the relationship that each has with the other two.
- Would you rather be a Predator or a Parasite? If you could be either one, which would you be and why? Carefully describe the differences between the two in the explanation of your choice. What kind of relationship do they have with other organisms?
This is a vocabulary test that I gave last Thursday. Rather than asking students to match vocabulary with definitions or to just regurgitate definitions in response to a word prompt, I wanted to see if they could describe the roles and relationships behind these words. Just what is a Dividend? or a Divisor? and how do they relate to each other? “Partners” to predators or parasites do not benefit from the transaction, quite the reverse. But how do you compare those relationships?
Anybody can memorize definitions. Weaving a story with words demonstrates true depth and breadth of understanding, and is a more durable learning. The results of this assessment were eye-opening in that some of my best students stumbled. More than a few didn’t write a word problem at all; others just recited the definitions. It’s one thing to be good at computation, it’s entirely another to be fluent in your understanding.
Me? I’d rather be a parasite, esp. Microplitis demolitor