Day 173 (of 187) a quick prethink of #bcedchat topic for June 9 (7pm pst) on “Next Years Math Class” led by @ChristineYH & @deannabrajcich with thanks for my thinking sparked by @joboaler @mathgarden @cbrownLmath and Paul Lockhart

Day 173 (of 187) a quick prethink of #bcedchat topic for June 9 (7pm pst) on “Next Years Math Class” with thanks for thinking sparked by @joboaler @mathgarden @cbrownLmath and Paul Lockhart

I’ll admit that as a librarian, my love for numbers had been lacking – but in contradiction to that, I’m seeing some other librarians, much like myself, taking a keen fascination in the maths later in our careers. My default bias for this is because “we” have done a great job differentiating reading writing and almost all subjects so that students work independently and push into “instructional” areas. Almost all subjects. The maths. So often I’ve been part of “groups” looking at math resources which so often is the quest for the ideal textbook. Though if we were to look for a single grade reader or writing workbook….eyes would roll and arguements would start. But I suspect mainly because so many of “us” became teachers because of a love of literacy…and we haven’t always considered numeracy as a literacy…. but there are neat things being thought and done with maths. I know I have been influenced (and getting disruptive thinking going) by the works of:

Jo Boaler @joboaler (Mathematical Mindsets) <– first attracted me was the focus on mindsets and joy I found in using projects to explore math topics

Sunil Singh @mathgarden (Pi of Life) <– kept wanting to check this out. Don’t know why I waited so long….

Dr Chris Brown @cbrownLmath (Math Recess with Sunil Singh) <— and some amazing link I am looking forward to exploring, especially the Ted Talks!

Paul Lockharts Mathematicians Lament (a foundation to all of the above!) I am almost at the place where I don’t want to talk Math with people unless they have at least read the essay if not the book!

Powerful writing which is making for deep thinking. But thinking that has connected with some of my own disruptive thoughts. I called mine “Recreational Mathematics” where the focus was on doing math in a non-linear, non-text Based way – which was a spiral from my own evolution from having math textbooks in the class, but the students opening them only a handful of times during the year (we talked more and we wrote, and drew and did some work but collaboratively).


A bit more play.

A bit more “enjoyment”.

Some more “blending” of math and other subjects (as in Finland).

A lot more “story” to help connect to the “why” of math. Numeracy was never “just there” to be understood, like reading and writing there was discovery and unfolding and trial and error. And some areas more preferred than others. Much as some prefer non-fiction to fiction, there are some realms of math that learners will enjoy more than others. We need to appreciate this and differentiate more.

Here is where my current mathematical thinking is leading me:

Manipulative Monday: exploring hands on and “vs” games (chess, backgammon, etc)

Tuesday: exploring the Magnificent 7 (24 game) and other independently cooperative challenges

Onederful Wednesday: exploring one question. Or one problem. But with many strategies! eg

T(ec)hursday: online activities from to Cool Math Games. I keep a long list on my “virtual assignments page” (I used to call it Friday Math Games, but I like putting the tECh into Thursday….)

Fantasy Friday – historical shares and stories connected to why we math as we do; play with a concept. Even if it’s just because it is pretty (a comment I attribute at least in spirit to Trevor Calkins)

And then work some projects to “encourage” certain thinkings (ie length & width & volume) in a way that promotes math being “meaningful”.

In other words, do it differently. And I think I still need to shift my thinking further – and these math thinkers are pushing my confidence that multiple questions in the same vein isn’t making things better. As I like to share – my son refused to answer 9×2 on a worksheet because he “had already done it” pointing at 3×6 and pointing out it’s just regrouping 3s…..

And as I am diving further down this rabbit hole, I am seeing where others thinking is being pushed. F’r instance:

I’m looking forward to finishing Math a Recess in time for Sunday nights #bcedchat on Next Year’s Math led by @ChristineYH & @deannabrajcich


About technolandy

Principaling on the Pacific in Powell River BC Pushing 'technologization' in education: blending technology and curriculum seamlessly. Advocate for better understanding of Anxiety in Education (and use of self-regulation) Utilizing ePortfolios & Descriptive Feedback to personalize learning!
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