Forest & Trees


Tip: Forest & Trees

How do I do it?
When looking at a problem, figure, formula, model etc. in math, students ned to be able to stand back and see the meaning of the whole (“the forest”) and how it relates to the parts (“the trees”).  For example, younger students studying different shapes, (the "trees") may notice that every shape has a certain number of sides - that shapes have characteristics or attributes (the "forest").  For older students, they may see that 6 x 7 = 42 (the whole or "forest") is the same as 6 x 3 + 6 x 4 (the parts or "forest"). Model doing this whenever possible to assist students in thinking about how the structure of math can help them understand it more deeply and to solve problems more elegantly.

Common Core Mathematical Practice Standards 1&7
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
Look for and make use of structure.

Tricia Gallagher-Geurtsen
Tricia Gallagher-Geurtsen


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