Thursday, January 22, 2009

Constructing Modern Math/Science Knowledge: The New Dynamic Classroom

Frosh student just introduced described himself as a "visual learner." How many of our students would be able to identify their learning style? This same student is presenting a session on Sunday.

Lots of power strips around here!

In this session, Ihor Charischak discussed his work at the Center for Inovation in Education and Science dealing with Collaborative learning.
He is now the proprietor fo the Dynamic Math Classroom Press.
Part 1: Set the Stage
"Well class, what did we learn today?"-Craig Fergusson
Seymour Papert:Mindstorms (The book I used for my General Methods course!)
"Spreadsheets, dynamic geometry software, and computer microworlds are useful tools for posing worthwhile problems." Charischak said that applets today are like microworlds.
Part 2: Doing some type of activity which has been motivated by the first part
Part 3: Kick back and Reflect
The Knowledge Domain s
1. Ability to Use Tech Resources

  • Software: Geometer's Sketchpad, Spreadsheets, Web Based Microworlds, Graphing equations, Green Globs, Other

  • Hardware: Interactive White Boards, Screen Sharing,

2. Create Technology-Oriented Learning Environments

3. Personalize the Curriculum

4. Mathematical Background and Attitude towards Learning Mathematics
5. Pedagogical STrategies and Discourse BREAK THE TELLING HABIT-ASK MORE QUESTIONS!! Large and small groups, conversation and debate

6. Assessment Strategies

i.e. What are students doing as they leave your classroom?

From 2000-2007 Charischak was disappointed due to roadblocks. Gladwell spoke about "The Tipping Point"at NCTM. Charischak asked him, "What's the tipping point for Math Education?" Gladwell wasn't sure. Now in "Outliers" he may have the answer.

Starts with a virus, a passion for learning math, through unique compelling projects that embrace authentic dynamic tools. Engage kids w/ Web 2.0 tools. Not a panacea but a starting point.

Dynamic Classroom 1.0-Teacher in the front of the room lecturing

Dynamic Classroom 2.0-Student Centered learning

Examples of Activities

  1. The Jinx Puzzle- Pick a # from 1-10, Add 11, Multiply by 6, Subtract 3, Divide by 3, Add 5, Divide by 2, Subtract the original number. -Can we find a number that breaks this? See the link. Try 1x10^18th!

  2. The Average Traveller problem-Using Google Maps and Google Doc Forms to create a database of people and calculate the average.

  3. Runner's POW-He also suggested the NCTM Illuminations site for applets like this. When using this, the teacher becomes the observer in the classroom.

  4. Stock Market Game-Student in the room: "It was fun. We'd look at the newspaper each day, then go to the lab and do trading. We did it as a class." Ihor said his experience wasn't as positive as it was too random. The didn't stop and reflect, until they started doing well, the kids suddenly got very interested! He did this w/ 6th graders and modified it based on the Milton Bradley Board Game "Stocks and Bonds"

  5. How Round is the Earth? The Noon Day Project to show how it was done in 200 B.C.

  6. The Green Globs Contest Starting in May of this year-He gave us a CD. Write an equation that hits as many globs as possible. Note: as he demonstrated, kids in the class were excitedly asking about trigonometric functions

The program contains 4 different programs, but he says that Green Globs is the highlight. Charischak thinks of this as a transformative piece of software. He gave the example of an 8th grade student named Guilliarmo, who used trig functions to hit 13 globs. The student later went on to teach the class, but didn't get excepted into the gifted program due to his grades.....

He encourages us to take the "Fishman Challenge" to journey from the ordinary to extraordinary. Miracles do happen!

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