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Creating a Digital Textbook
Organizing a Digital Textbook
Although Math isn’t my strong suit (unless I have a spreadsheet or database in my corner!), I found these interesting concepts/links streaming from TCEA Math Academy:
- Great resource for Math teachers. http://mathcoachscorner.blogspot.com/ #appsmashing #TCEAMathAcad
- Use Google Correlate to teach scatter plots
- Audio Comments with Google Docs – http://t.co/LBhTSTQ13o
- Recommended iPad apps – http://t.co/YhVNdgW1Km
- Movenote.com presentation on google apps in drive for pic in pic presentations
- @Holli_horton says, “We cannot give a device+few apps and expect true tech integration. Teachers need time to work apps into curriculum.”
- Gotta check out http://www.mathnspired.com if your classroom has nspires!
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- Using computers is the silver bullet of making math education work.
- Pose the right questions.
- Change real world problem into math problem.
- We ought to be using computers to do step 3. (My mother, a veteran math teacher who is 82 years old, disagrees with this…everyone needs to do this calculating by hand).
- Math is not equal to calculating…it’s the chore, it’s a means to an end, not an end in itself.
- Computers dumb math down…do we really believe that the math most people are doing in school practically today is more than applying procedures to problems they don’t understand for reasons they don’t get? I don’t think so.
- Make math more practical and conceptual simultaneously…
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- Math.com Worksheet Generator
- HS Unlimited Worksheet Generator
- Free Math Help – Worksheet Generator
- Printable Worksheets (PDF)
- Percentage Worksheet Generator
And, for those of you gasping in shock at the liberal use of the word “worksheets” in this blog entry, here’s some goodness for you:
- Math Projects – Project-based learning is a terrific way to link your curriculum with real world events and applications of concepts that your students are learning.
- Solving Weaknesses in Math Education Using Project-based Learning
- Math Projects Journal
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Great article by Carl Clark…here are some of the highlights. While I have to admit to being terrible in mathematics, I was surprised that a mathematics educator has found that the Internet has made current teaching practices in his field obsolete. It should come as no surprise that mathematics teaching, like almost everything else, has great potential to be transformed by Internet access, yet math has always been so “black box”…unknowable without a spreadsheet to help.
When I started my administrative career as a coordinator for a $2.9 million dollar grant program to help 272 teachers across 4 districts and 8 private schools earn a Master’s degree in Curriculum & Instruction with Instructional Technology specialization, receiving a laptop and a CD-burner, I had to worry about a big budget. I started to put it into an Excel spreadsheet but then I noticed that one of my colleagues had created a database to manage the budget.
A database to manage a budget? It was an incredible idea at the time, and still is for some organizations, but it made managing the budget so much easier! I, of course, borrowed that Filemaker Pro database and customized it for my expansive budget then was able to provide up to date accounts, down to the last penny spending of funding that endeared me to the project director, my boss. It was a valuable lesson in how to manage budgets. Nothing in my school work as a child had prepared me for that experience.
I am convinced more and more that the essential experiences that shape us and the work we do are seldom “in school” and instead are outside of it. Is this too sweeping a generalization? Probably. But let me pick out some experiences from my past:
- Becoming a writer – learned by writing book reports in elementary school, 6-8th grade, while watching movie critic Bob Polunsky at home and imitating his “voice” while writing. It gave me a greater awareness for MY voice. But I suppose the real writing happened when I connected after-school to computer bulletin board services (BBS) to argue a variety of topics with others.
- Working with a spreadsheet – Since they didn’t have computers in my school until AFTER I left, I really learned to use spreadsheet programs (e.g. VisiCalc, AppleWorks) at home through experimentation. Same goes for databases. By the time “school” caught up to me in college, I had already explored spreadsheets, databases, and word processing (the most practical of all apps).
- Math computation – Not my favorite subject, mathematics was one I had to struggle with. I was one of those teens who wondered, aside from basic computation, what algebraic equations would do for me. Proportions and ratios was the most useful of what I learned, but I learned more from trying out various functions in a spreadsheet program or database…and that experience was more relevant to my learning than school work.
- Reading – Reading was definitely a chore in elementary school, as I learned two languages (Spanish and English). I failed second grade but my mother was a vigorous advocate for me and I was promoted to third grade on the condition that I spend a LOT of time in summer school…developmentally, as a premature child, I caught up that summer. But reading didn’t take off for me until 6th grade when I moved to the United States from Panama and found myself alone without friends, afraid to go outside because there were murders and kidnappings in the U.S. every day (that attitude took time to change). I ended up spending time at the local library, reading 10-20 books a week, which was amazing since I hadn’t been much of a reader in Panama.
As I reflect on these brief experiences, school doesn’t seem as important now as I thought it did. School provided some core experiences necessary for success, but doing MORE with the core, elaborating on the good stuff was critical. As a parent, I need to re-evaluate how I can enrich outside school experiences for my children, especially since in school experiences are enduring such turmoil and upheaval.
Should students be educated at home if the school experience is so limiting? School isn’t just about education…ah well. Time to go have breakfast. In the meantime, here are the points that jumped out from Carl’s article at ASCD Express: