Marvelous #Math Monday 01-20-14

Engagement: This video is more for your own engagement as a teacher, though bits of it could be used with students. 🙂 Numberphile YouTube video of the moment is a 9 minute interview with Professor Frenkel, a mathematician, on why do people hate math. He advocates for an approach to mathematics where we show students the bigger picture – applications of mathematics such as highlighting how Google and Amazon use complicated algorithms to come up with suggestions to finish your search terms or provide you with book suggestions. He says that when you say “art”, people think of Van Gogh and Picasso and not of painting fences. He wants us to ensure that our students think of mathematics in terms of applications.

Critical Thinking: Michael Habib has written an article on the mathematics that birds use to form “the flying v” for efficient flight. A video clip is included in the article – this could encourage some higher level thinking with article’s connections made to cycling (Tour de France). Ask students where else this knowledge could be applied beyond cycling and bird flight!

For those teachers who are exploring parabolas in algebra with their students, check out this “Wax Paper Parabolas” activity that the Math=Love blogger has written up. It’s a great hands-on approach leading students to an understanding of the focus, directrix, and connections to parabolic graphs. Love it!

Connections: Yet another great site with an organized collection of recommended books with mathematics connections in them, “Let’s Read Math!” has clickable links by mathematics topic as well as grade levels (preschool, middle, and high school). Check out the collection and ask your teacher librarian to add to your school’s resources!

Professional Learning: If you’re wanting to explore some useful tools for yourself, check out this “3 Incredibly Useful Tools for Math Educators” post. Grapher, Microsoft Mathematics, and LaTeX are all highlighted and explained.

Ressources en Français: On a des activités mathématiques pour les étudiant(e)s au site « maths à vivre ». Il existe des modules pour les étudiants de se renseigner sur les fractions et les décimales, les itérations, et plus!

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About tjthiessen

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