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Question Stems for Math Practices

Question Stems for Math Practices

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This product features printable cards with discussion/reflection questions that teachers can ask to promote each of the CCSS math practices, plus prompts that tie all the math practices together!

Looking for a version that students can use during their conversations? Check out my Partner Discussion Cards for Common Core Math Practices! You can place these cards in centers for students to help them ask (and answer) the math practice questions featured here in the question stems for teachers.

By integrating these open-ended questions into your daily math instruction and routines, you can help students meet the following K-12 Common Core standards:

MP1 Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
MP2 Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
MP3 Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.
MP4 Model with mathematics.
MP5 Use appropriate tools strategically.
MP6 Attend to precision.
MP7 Look for and make use of structure.
MP8 Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.

I've organized over 100 questions into cards for each of the 8 math practices standards so you can easily facilitate conversations with and between students during problem-solving activities. Print the cards onto card stock or mount them on construction paper, then cut them apart and store them on an “o” ring/book ring. Or, keep the pages in your plan book or as a file on your computer to help you plan your math lessons, and reference them during your conversations with students as needed.

You'll also get a large card with reflection prompts that incorporate all 8 math practices, and a set of the same prompts in smaller, rectangular form so you can cut them apart for students to keep in their math journals or notebooks. The prompts go beyond asking students to explain how they arrived at an answer. They require students to reflect on strong math practices and how those practices helped them approach the problem in a systematic, logical way. They help students reflect on their plan for solving, what happened when they noticed their plan was or wasn’t working, how math tools assisted them, patterns they noticed, strategies they used for checking their work, and how they could prove their answer is correct.

When using the question stems and prompts during math problem-solving activities, you can use just one or two questions and have students delve deeply into them through written reflections or oral discussions. Or, you might use many of the questions in a single lesson as you facilitate a discussion. The download includes 5 pages of tips for having math conversations about math practices

The question stems and prompts were designed for grades 2-6, although they can be adapted for any math lesson or activity at any grade level. Some of the best times for facilitating conversations about math include whole-class math talks, number talks, math chats, mental math and mental computation lessons, complex multi-step word problem lessons, math games, small group math instruction, math workshop, math centers, math stations, math tubs, and math journals.

Download the free preview to learn more about the cards and how they can be used!


See what other teachers are saying!

These are one of the best things I have bought on TPT! I used these to help plan for my observation and my principal was hugely impressed. I showed them to him and he loved it too! - Anonymous Buyer

Just what I needed to get myself better organized. Thank you! - Dawn Van Sickle

Thank you for creating this great resource. It has helped me focus on the math practices with my students to deepen their understanding of the concepts I am teaching. - Kimberly S.

Love these to help develop students' math conversations to work on the mathematical practices! - K W.

These are awesome!!! I can't wait to put them up in my classroom! Perfect for a bulletin board! I will then highlight whatever stem I want the kids to focus on! Thanks!! - Meyers’ Maties in 6th Grade

I have had dozens of compliments on this product. It is written in kid-friendly language, looks great, and actually helps the students. I have had many, many teachers ask for a copy and have referred them to this site to purchase a copy for themselves. I wish you great success in your TPT store. This product alone has helped me tremendously. - Elizabeth E.

These really helped me to understand how to implement the math practices on a daily basis. Thank you! - Michele I.

This product makes it easy to plan which questions to ask the students. It helps me make sure that I am really emphasizing the math practices. - Stella H.


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Discussion Starters for Math Problem Solving: Questions for Critical Thinking


You might also like:

Question Stems for Common Core Math Practices
Partner Discussion Cards/Conversation Starters for Common Core Math Practices
Math Talk Posters: Student conversation starters for problem solving

Be sure to check out my website where there are hundreds of pages of classroom management resources that make teaching more effective, efficient, and enjoyable! You'll find photos, activities, printable forms/posters, and more.



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