Launch, Explore, Discuss

At the elementary, middle, and high school levels we use a "Launch, Explore, Discuss" lesson structure which allows us to build class routines for exploring a rich problem in a student centered way. The launch, explore, discuss framework forefronts student thinking and supports understanding and discussion of student problem solving strategies (as opposed to procedures, answer getting, or speed). Discussion of mathematical ideas is student generated and situates students as the mathematical authority in the classroom.


A launch, explore, discuss lesson structure is also used in Cognitively Guided Instruction (CGI). CGI is a student-centered approach to teaching math at the elementary level that starts with what students already know and builds on their natural number sense and intuitive approaches to problem solving. When we use a CGI launch, explore, discuss lesson structure we focus on understanding student thinking, asking smart questions, and supporting students in listening to and thinking about each other's ideas. 

Launch-Explore-Discuss in Action

Why Use a Launch, Explore, Discuss Lesson Structure? 
Karen Launch, explore, discuss
Play Video

Karen Underwood, one of our elementary MAIC teachers reflects on why she uses a launch explore discuss lesson structure with her 3rd grade students. Karen is in her 3rd year of teaching at the time of this video.

Student Centered
Play Video

Former eighth grade teacher Katerina Milvidskaia and her former student, Sarah, discuss the benefits of student centered instruction and unpack the student experience. Katerina was in her 7th year of teaching at the time of this video.

The Importance of Anticipatory Planning 
Karen Anticipatory Planning
Play Video

Karen discusses the importance of anticipatory planning and thinking about potential student problem solving strategies.