In third grade this week, I've been helping the students understand multiplication, and today I was teaching the kids more about problem solving. We had practiced a few together, and I was explaining their next task. I was holding up a picture card from which they would use the details to write a multiplication sentence. For example, one had bouquets of flowers. They were to write something similar to this: Sally has 5 vases of flowers at her shop. Each vase has 6 flowers in it. How many flowers does Sally have in all the vases?
So, there I was, teaching. The lesson had been fantastic. I was holding up a picture card that had cats on it that were playing with yarn.
"So, if you were using this picture to write your multiplication sentence, you could look at all the things that come in groups. You could write about their ears, their eyes, their legs, their balls . . ." to which about half the class (mostly boys) BUST UP laughing(falling out of chairs laughing), and I promptly yelled out, "Yarn! The cats are playing with balls of yarn! Look at the picture!" There was a lot of clarifying, pointing, laughing, and me shaking my head.
We all pretty much lost it for about five minutes. What's a teacher to do?
And yes, at the end of it all, some kids were still oblivious as to what all the laughter was about.