Marvelous #Math Monday 02-18-13

Today is Louis Riel Day…and the Manitoba Storm that settled in overnight is encouraging some physical activity (stay safe shoveling snow!) and some indoor comfort food (perhaps bannock to celebrate Louis Riel Day?).
Hope you all stay warm!

Focus Area #1: Engagement
TedEd Talks, Lessons, Flipped Math: If you haven’t heard of TedEd, check it out as it’s a collection of TedTalks but combined with lessons and the possibility of flipping the videos. There’s a great blog post at MathsInsider highlighting 9 of the TedEd talks on maths but since that post’s focused on getting teens interested in math (favourite video is the last one by Hans Rosling!), I thought I’d highlight my favourite TedEd talk for elementary aged students. The video “How to Defeat a Dragon with Math” is good for upper elementary ages as well as teens, as it focuses on order of operations. It’s interesting for older students because it refers to pi, e, and other not-so-upper-elementary ideas (briefly). Good stuff!

Focus Area #2: Critical Thinking
Tweet-Sized Maths Tasks: Dan Meyer’s blog has a collection of twitter maths tasks. They’re good for those deep-thinking, connections-type of conversations. Because the task has to fit the size of a tweet (140 characters), teachers had to think carefully too about what they’re asking, what their wording is in the tweet. A great collection of problems that can allow students to collaborate and use technology to help answer the problems posed! (Questions in the collection range from grades 5-12 and beyond.)

Focus Area #3: Connections
Great Maths Teaching Ideas: This blog has compilations of ideas for Number, Algebra, Shape, Data, eBooks and is created by William Emeny, a young maths teacher in England. If you’re thinking of blogging, here’s one example of a blog that ranges in level from upper elementary to high school. An example of an idea that can be found on his blog: It may not be cricket weather yet, but Snopes has confirmed that outdoor temp can be determined by cricket chirps! (So it must be true, right?!) If you want a lesson connecting that to linear graphing, check it out and make sure you read the comments for the Snopes link.

Focus Area #4: Professional Learning
ManACE TIN: The ManACE TIN (Tech Innovation Night) session is coming up tomorrow (February 19th)! Check out the ManACE website and scroll down the page for details – Minecraft (yes this can be used in maths classes too!), Discovery Education, and Social Media in the Classroom! One evening of food, tech fun, and collegial connections! I’ll be there! 🙂

Mental Maths and Estimation: Pearson Publishers is bringing in David McKillop on April 8th and 9th to lead full-day sessions on mental maths and estimation. April 8th is geared towards K-4, April 9th is geared towards 5-8. I sent a separate email last week forwarding the Pearson invitation to administrators and asking them to forward to teachers. Registration is $100 through Pearson.

Divisional PD: Not this week, but next week the multiplicity of workshops I’m facilitating begins! So excited to meet with divisional teachers, engage in conversations about maths, and see where the learning takes us! (First one starts February 26th! Some room still available in all workshops – register today!)

Focus Area #5: Current Research
“Passion reflects the thrill, as well as the frustrations, of learning; it can be infectious, it can be taught, it can be modelled, and it can be learnt. It is among the most prized outcomes of schooling and… it infuses many of the influences that make the difference to the outcomes.” (Visible Learning: A Synthesis of Over 800 Meta-Analyses Relating to Achievement, John Hattie, Routledge 2009, sorry no page number this time since I’m at home, book’s on office desk, and this quote is a poster in my home office. 🙂 Happy MB Storm Day!)

Hattie’s book was ground-breaking upon its release, as it summarized 30 years of research to show what the most effective things were that teachers, schools, administrators, and parents could do to improve student learning. The rest of February’s Math Monday emails will feature quotes from this book.

Focus Area #6: Ressources en Francais
Gap Closing (Ontario) en Francais: Last year, the Ontario Gap Closing website posted their grade 6 Number Sense modules. Just 10 days ago, they also uploaded Gap Closing resources for grade 9 Number sense modules. Remember that this meshes with Ontario curriculum, so not a perfect match with Manitoba, but still valuable en Francais!

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About tjthiessen

explorer, administrator, consultant, student, leader
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