The Frayer Model for Math

The Frayer Model is a graphic organizer traditionally used for language concepts, specifically to enhance vocabulary development. However, graphic organizers are great tools for thinking through math problems. When given a particular problem, we need to employ the following process to guide our thinking which is a four-step process:

  1. What am I being asked? Do I comprehend the question?
  2. What approaches might I utilize?
  3. How will I find the solution to the problem?
  4. What is my answer? How do I know? Did I answer the question entirely?

Learning the Frayer Model in

These 4 steps are then employed with the Frayer model template to guide the problem-solving process and create an efficient way of thinking. When the visual organizer is used regularly and frequently, over time, there will be a significant improvement in solving math problems. In addition, students who were afraid to take risks will improve their confidence in solving math problems.

Let’s take a fundamental problem to show the thinking process of using the Frayer Model.

Sample Problem

A kid was carrying a bunch of balloons. The wind blew away seven of them, and now he only has nine balloons left. How many balloons did the kid start with?

Employing  the Frayer Model:

  1. UnderstandI need to determine how many balloons the kid had before the wind blew them away.
  2. Plan: I could draw a picture of the number of balloons he has and the balloons the wind blew away.
  3. Solve: The drawing would show all the balloons; the child could come up with the number sentence alternatively.
  4. Check: Re-read the question and place the answer in written format.

Although this problem is essential, the unknown is at the start of the problem, which often stumps young learners. As learners become comfortable using a graphic organizer like a 4-block method or the Frayer Model, modified for math, the result is improved problem-solving skills. The Frayer Model also observes the steps to solving problems in math.

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