What is an AHA?
An AHA can occur in an instant…
… a moment in which something finally clicks into place. It’s accompanied by a sudden smile, the words, “I get it!” or “Why didn’t anyone ever tell me that before?”
Creating mathematical AHAs for children involves ongoing dialogue and support. It involves insight into their thinking and current conceptual understandings or misunderstandings. This is done through our own curiosity of their thinking, the questions we ask, and listening to what they say versus what we hope to hear. It involves determining why those misunderstandings make sense based on the child’s experiences. We then use these insights to make purposeful instructional decisions to help all students excel.
Creating mathematical AHAs for children, especially struggling students, involves knowledge of the vertical progression of key concepts. This knowledge helps us not only intervene when students struggle but helps us prevent misconceptions from developing. It helps us build consistency in the conceptual focus across the math curriculum. It helps create those AHA moments.