After watching this video
, teacher Michelle Townsley shared a great tip:
For 6th grade math, I give my students a substantial problem to work out. I ask them to circle all the numbers, box the math vocabulary, underline the objective, and put a question mark next to anything they don't know. Then the students have five minutes of quiet think-time, followed by collaboration. Most students haven't solved the problem by that time, but they have had enough time to start formulating solutions.