**Dot Number Talks**

Dot Number Talks are often the ideal way to get a number talks routine up and running.

Run regularly over time,** **number talks can:** **

**✨ **create habits of mathematical reasoning

**✨ **foster developing number sense, and

**✨ **build mathematical confidence.

**Dot Number Talks in action**

One of our favourite ways to engage in professional learning is to watch other practitioners in action — both to notice what pedagogical moves we like, and those we don't, and why.

As you watch each other these video clips, consider:

1️⃣ What do you notice that's interesting or surprising?

2️⃣ What are you left wondering about?

3️⃣ What would you do differently and why?

**Example 1: Whole Class Number Talk (Year 2)**

**How to run a dot number talk**

1. **Select a dot formation** to explore that feels like a good fit for participants. If you're starting out, you might like to brainstorm a few 'ways of seeing' on paper before running with a group. This will give a little experience of the recording component (see step 4).

2. **Give think time** while participants look at the dots and think about how many there are. **Encourage self-extension** during this time - if there's still time, look for another way to count the dots.

3.** Collect answers.** Invite the answers** **that people got. (This step is missing from the above video). There may be more than one answer. In fact, it's best to expect that there is - this helps to normalise mistakes as a** curious and useful part of the sense-making process.** **Record the answers** somewhere on the board.

4.** I****nvite solution paths. ** Listen as a participant explains how they counted the dots. Record thinking on the board, both visually and as arithmetic. See video for example recordings. Ask if someone else **solved it differently. **Repeat the listening and recording process for them. Collect a few different strategies.

5. **Invite analysis** of the solution paths collected. You could ask:

*What do you notice or wonder about the solution paths?*or*Which too strategies are similar? How are they the same? How are they different?*

NB: When starting out, with younger learners, it may be more appropriate to combine step 3 (collecting answers) with step 4 (inviting solution paths). Then build up to separating these steps, when appropriate, over time.

**Most of all... have fun!**

**Small group example 1**

**6 on a 10-frame**

A video of a small group number talk in action with three Foundation students.

< 3 minutes

**Small group example 2**

**6 on a 10-frame**

Another video of a small group number talk in action with three Foundation students.

< 3 minutes

**Dot talks for all ages**

This set of dot prompts has been designed for running Dot Number Talk prompts. Most of these are recommended for Year 2 and above. **Access Dot Prompts here.**

**The Number Talks Network**

The Number Talks Network is a community of educators developing, sharing and refining our number talks pedagogy and practice.

To know when the next Number Talks Network event is on, consider joining Maths Play's fortnightly newsletter. This way you'll be the first to know when new events are scheduled. Sign up below! 📮

### Be in the Maths Play loop

Receive the latest news, research and resources to your inbox via Maths Play's fortnightly email newsletter.

We won't send spam. Unsubscribe at any time.

*Maths Play acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land on which we live, learn and work, and pay our respects to Elders past and present. Maths Play is dedicated to learning and operating in ways that acknowledge, respect, celebrate and learn from the original and beautiful cultures of these lands.*