Help your students review and feel confident with these order of operations error analysis challenges! The digital format makes it low-prep for you, and engaging for students.
One of my favorite ways to encourage rich math discussions and challenge students to think deeply about the math they’re learning is with an error analysis task. This means you present students with a math problem that has already been solved or has some steps worked out, and students analyze the steps and solution to determine if it was solved correctly. One math concept that often requires a lot of practice and review (since it comes up again and again throughout many years of math study) is order of operations. Hopefully this set of order of operations error analysis challenges provide a different way for students to practice.
Order of Operations Error Analysis:
This free sample includes 8 different tasks called, “Is It True?”
On each Google Slide, an expression has been evaluated and solution given. Students must analyze the steps used to determine if order of operations was followed correctly.
There is then space for them to share their answer and explain their reasoning.
The goal is to address common mistakes and misconceptions in an engaging, but non-threatening way. Although I think it is beneficial for students to analyze and correct their own mistakes, sometimes that can feel overwhelming or personal. By presenting a random problem, students are ‘outsiders looking in’ and the anxiety level is lowered.
In addition, I intentionally included some correct answers so that students actually take time to think through the steps. Is the solution true? Does it follow order of operations? I don’t want them to always assume it must be wrong.
These tasks were designed for students in grades 5 and 6, who are just learning and needing lots of review. Some expressions include exponents, but others don’t making them doable for 5th graders.
If you love this set of rich math tasks, you may like the complete collection. The full set includes 20 Order of Operations Error Analysis Tasks in both a digital (Google Slides) format as well as a convenient printer-friendly format.
Using the Error Analysis Tasks for Google Slides:
These tasks are designed to be used in Google Slides and can be assigned in Google Classroom.
When you download the product from my shop, you will be given a pdf file with an access link to the digital slides.
To use and assign them, you will first need to make a copy of the slides (it should prompt you to do this immediately). You will then have your own copy in your Google Drive that you can assign to students (although you may want to send them just 2-3 tasks at a time rather than all 8).
Once you send your students a copy, they will be able to type directly onto each slide.
Included in the Order of Operations Download:
- Directions and Google Slides access link
- Directions for assigning in Google Classroom
- Ideas for incorporating these tasks
- Answer key
Different Ways to Incorporate Error Analysis Tasks:
- Daily Warm-Up
- Substitute activity
- Entry/exit ticket
- Partner challenge or pair-share-check activity
- Early finisher challenge
However you incorporate these into your lessons, I hope it is a fun challenge for kids and a meaningful math task for you! Use the link below to grab this set FREE in my shop.
Want to incorporate more error analysis tasks or have students correct their mistakes? My set of templates can be used and adapted by kids of all ages to make sense of mistakes and learn from them. Includes classroom posters and discussion guide as well!
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