- 30 minutes
- Social and Emotional Skills
2Schedule 10/25/20 08:00 AM Three Simple but Not Easy Questions The following activity will challenge your students. Many of them will fail to answer correctly. Correct answers are not the goal of this activity. Known as the Cognitive Reflection Test, it has many uses. For the purpose of the Youth Entrepreneurs curriculum, it helps introduce and reinforce concepts related to https://teacheverywhere.org/activity/three-simple-but-not-easy-questions/Print
The following activity will challenge your students. Many of them will fail to answer correctly. Correct answers are not the goal of this activity.
Known as the Cognitive Reflection Test, it has many uses. For the purpose of the Youth Entrepreneurs curriculum, it helps introduce and reinforce concepts related to Sound Judgment, Be Principled, and, if deployed in conjunction with the classroom currency (YE dollars), it can create an opportunity for the students to build wealth by solving problems.
The goals of this activity include knowing when to use reflection to make sure that you understand the real question being asked and not fall into the trap of reflexive thinking. These questions allow the facilitator to point out the tendency toward over-valuing our mental reflexes when it is much more valuable to slow down and reflect on the problem presented.
Also, this activity is a solid introduction to the concept of humility in the face of failure. It helps your students recognize that moments of failure are inherent to long term success. We can find value in failure through learning new things and managing circumstances that lead to failure in the future.
Additionally, the lesson reinforces the concept that we must be willing to acknowledge when we don’t know an answer. This requires integrity and humility to admit failure publicly and to oneself. When faced with a lack of knowledge, or a lack of the skill set necessary to overcome a problem or take advantage of an opportunity, an entrepreneur knows that the need to create value remains. In order to do what is right (integrity) by continuing to pursue value creation, an entrepreneur appeals for help from others. This requires humility to admit a lack of understanding or skill, and the respect to recognize such skill or knowledge in others.
Remind students that entrepreneurship is simply solving problems for profit and that they are going to get an opportunity to earn profit by solving some simple problems today.
Social and Emotional Skills
- Students are participating in Responsible Decision Making throughout this activity as they are attempting to solve the questions. They are challenged to make constructive choices when their brains are prompting them to make choices based on observed patterns. During the reflection, students will realize the importance of analyzing situations and problems and understanding the true question being asked.
- Students are also practicing skills related to Self-Management as they are challenged to acknowledge when they get the questions wrong (be principled). Some students will likely work through emotions of defeat, “less than” or inadequacy, and/or disappointment as they face failure. These are ideal scenarios where an educator can help support students through these emotions by helping them to acknowledge their feelings but reinforcing that their failure is small and quick. There were limited consequences associated with the failure and they were able to learn a valuable skill from the failure that they can apply to future activities and life situations. When the educator supports the student in this way, the student is learning more about their personal motivations and mental strategies to manage their stress in the future.
- Determine which platform you will use to engage students in the activity.
- Review questions and answers. Make sure you have an understanding as to how to arrive at the correct answers.
- Students will need a way to record answers. Determine if you will have them physically write their answers and show on the screen, post answers on class discussion board/chat, type answers and share, etc.
- Have virtual YE currency tracking ready along with the slide presentation.
- Do not display the slide presentation until directed to in the lesson.
- Determine how you will engage students in the debrief after the activity.
- Each student will be working independently.
- Tell the students that they will be asked 3 simple but not easy questions one at a time and that you will give them 60 seconds to answer each question. Ask them to write their answers in whichever method you have pre-determined such as in the discussion board/chat.
- Make sure students don’t show or share their answers until after the 60 seconds is up as to not give away answers.
- Let them know that you will be paying for correct answers:
- 1 YE Dollar for the first correct answer
- 2 YE Dollars for the second correct answer
- 3 YE Dollars for the third correct answer
- Each student can potentially earn 6 virtual YE dollars for the answers.
- Consider having a class code word, buzzer, or something to let students know it’s time to post/share their answers.
- Check student answers and then pay them accordingly for each question.
- It may work best to have students share, then check answers and award currency after each question (3 separate rounds).
- Do not reveal to the individual students which answers they got correct or incorrect. Save this for the debrief.
- Take mental notes while checking their answers. How did they react?
- Here are the questions. For this activity, it is beneficial to debrief the activity as you go (See Debrief below).
- 1. A bat and ball cost $1.10 in total. The bat costs $1.00 more than the ball. How much was the ball?
- 2. If it takes 5 machines 5 minutes to make 5 widgets, how long would it take 100 of the same machines to make 100 widgets?
- 3. In a lake, there is a patch of lily pads. Every day the patch doubles in size. If it takes 48 days to cover the entire lake, how long would it take to cover half of the lake?
Students can complete the debrief in many ways. Some options include on paper, in a group setting via any virtual call platform, or by recording their feedback using EdTech tools and sharing with their classmates.
- Say: “The brain is made to see patterns and we reflexively think and act based on those expected patterns.”
- Call on a student and ask them to reflect on how they learned to add 2+2. Once they have responded, ask them if they still use that same process. Generally, the answer will be yes. This will help the students understand the previous statement.
- Lead students slowly through the correct answers and allow them to ask questions as you go. Using the presentation titled “3 Simple, but Not Easy Questions”, go through the three questions. The goal is to help them arrive at the correct answer to the questions.
A bat and ball cost $1.10 in total. The bat costs $1.00 more than the ball. How much was the ball?
Say the ball costs X.
Then the bat costs $1 more, so it is X + 1.
So we have bat + ball = X + (X + 1) = 1.
1, because together they cost $1.10.
This means 2X + 1 = 1.1, then 2X = 0.1, so X = 0.05.
This means the ball costs 5 cents and the bat costs $1.05
Ball = X
Bat = X (ball + 1)
Together the ball and bat = $1.10
X + (X+1) = 1.10
Combine like terms, 2X + 1 = 1.10
Subtract the 1 from each side, 2X = .10
Divide X by 2, .05 = X
This means the ball costs 5 cents and the bat
2. If it takes 5 machines 5 minutes to make 5 widgets, how long would it take 100 of the same machines to make 100 widgets?
Answer: 5 minutes
- If it takes 5 machines 5 minutes to make 5 widgets, then it takes 1 machine 5 minutes to make 1 widget (each machine is making a widget in 5 minutes).
- If we have 100 machines working together, then each can make a widget in 5 minutes. So there will be 100 widgets in 5 minutes.
3. In a lake there is a patch of lily pads. Every day the patch doubles in size. If it takes 48 days to cover the entire lake, how long would it take to cover half of the lake?
Answer: 47 days
- Every day FORWARD the patch doubles in size. So every day BACKWARDS means the patch halves in size. So on day 47 the lake is half full.
- Ask students: “Was it personally difficult to accept that you got the answer wrong? Or that you were not figuring it out? How did you respond to not figuring it out?” Take a few responses from the class.
- Say: “Successful entrepreneurs have the integrity and humility to acknowledge their own lack of understanding when they don’t know something. They have the humility to seek out others who can help them understand why their thinking was flawed.”
- Explain to students that entrepreneurs have to be able to control their use of reflexive and reflective behavior. Operating solely on reflexive behavior can easily lead to costly decisions and negative outcomes.
- Give them an example they can relate to. Ask if anyone has played basketball. Ask if anyone has ever gotten a technical or fouled out of a game. Ask them to explain their behavior directly after. Explain how their reflexive behavior affected the team, coach, etc. You can also relate it to something that has happened in your life.
- Sound Judgment requires reflection and contemplation as well as not falling into the trap of deceptive patterns like the 3 questions.
- Tie this back to the example you discussed with the students. Did they foul out of a game again, if so how did they react?
- Even though you may not have gotten the questions all correct, what did you learn through this activity? For example, did students give up? Did they not believe that their answers were incorrect even after walking through the correct answers? Perhaps you had students get all of them correct. How did they behave when they were validated? Did they show humility toward their peers or did they flaunt their intelligence? Dig deeper into what it means to have Sound Judgment and Be Principled in regard to the outcomes of this activity
If you like Business, try...