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Supplemental Materials

Worked Example Pairs (WEPs)

At the core of our materials are the Worked Example Pairs (WEPs). Each WEP shows the mathematical work and dialogue of two hypothetical students as they attempt to solve one or more algebra problems. Our curriculum contains four different types of WEPs, with the types varying in what is being compared and the instructional goal of the comparison.

  • Which is better? WEPs show the same problem solved using two different correct strategies, with the goal of understanding when and why one strategy is more efficient or easier than the other.
  • Which is correct? WEPs show the same problem solved with a correct and incorrect strategy, with the goal of understanding and avoiding common errors.
  • Why does it work? WEPs show the same problem solved with two different correct strategies, but with the goal of illuminating the conceptual rationale in one strategy that is less apparent in the other strategy.
  • How do they differ? WEPs show two different problems solved in related ways, with an interest in illustrating what the relationship between problems and answers of the two problems reveals about an underlying mathematical concept.

Student Worksheets

In conjunction with the WEPs, we have also created worksheets to facilitate class discussion about multiple solution methods.

Each CDMS worksheet features a question or prompt at the top of the page that is related to the WEP being taught. The worksheets are designed to follow a think-pair-share approach where students first think independently about the worksheet prompt, then turn and share ideas with a partner, and finally engage in whole class discussion.

At the end of the lesson, the class discusses the “Big Idea”, or main takeaway point that our team has developed for the WEP, and the last prompt on the worksheet asks for students to write the Big Idea using their own words.

*Click on the links below to view our CDMS materials.