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Math and Inquiry: The Importance of Letting Students Stumble

For subjects like math and foreign language, which are traditionally taught in a linear and highly structured context, using more open-ended inquiry-based models can be challenging. But inquiry learning is based on the premise that, with a little bit of structure and guidance, teachers can support students to ask questions that lead them to learn those same important skills -- in ways that are meaningful to them.

Imagery: A Key to Understanding Math

According to math educators, mathematical imagery is what students are missing, and what causes confusion. "Mathematics is a way to read the world of nature and technology around us. If a teacher can convey this, the entire world becomes an exciting textbook.”

Finding the Beauty in Math

How does a person fall in love with math? For too many, math class conjures up anxious worksheets filled with rows of unanswered problems. Students go along, seeming to perform the steps required -- plug in the formulas, solve for x -- without ever understanding what they’re doing, or why.

New Research Asks: Does Blended Learning Boost Algebra Scores?

A recent report by the RAND Corporation, in partnership with the Department of Education, tries to provide an objective overview of blended learning. RAND conducted a national two-year randomized trial to determine whether a blended learning curriculum developed by Carnegie Learning, Inc. had a positive effect on middle and high school algebra students.

Does Math Exist Outside the Human Brain?

In this episode of the Idea Channel‘s always-brilliant explanation of how and why the world works, the focus is on math, and the mind-bending question: Who created math, anyway? “Unlike physics, chemistry, and biology we can’t see it, smell it, or even directly observe it in the universe. And so that has made a lot … Continue reading Does Math Exist Outside the Human Brain? →

In Teaching Math, What’s the Right Mix of Content and Context?

Getty “Polynomial functions!” “Trig identities!” “How about the properties? Commutative, associative, distributive.” So unfolded a laundry list of what a group of math teachers considered the more painful and less necessary concepts covered in the average high school math curriculum. The laments, aired at EduCon 2.5 in Philadelphia at Science Leadership Academy last weekend, were … Continue reading In Teaching Math, What’s the Right Mix of Content and Context? →

How Math is Getting Its Groove Back

By Rebecca Jacobson Carrie Lewis and Kelly Steele’s fifth grade students slide and spin across the classroom floor, doing the hustle, the robot, and the running man. While it may look at first glance like goofing off, these students are actually dancing for a higher cause…math. Lewis, a STEM specialist for Virginia’s Lynchburg city schools, … Continue reading How Math is Getting Its Groove Back →

Making Math Meaningful with Online Games and Videos

By Almetria Vaba Math can be made meaningful when connected to students’ experiences. With video clips and interactive games from public media students practice math concepts while exploring real world concepts. Learn how to decorate an intricate cake, play the role of the pharmacist, roof a house and more using PBS LearningMedia resources to measure … Continue reading Making Math Meaningful with Online Games and Videos →

Connecting the Dots: Teaching How to Think

In her “anti-parabola” video Doodling in Math Class: Connecting the Dots, Vi Hart demonstrates mathematical curiosity and creativity, which happens to be the opposite of what she does in math class. As she says, “Teaching how to think requires giving power and responsibility to individuals while teaching what to think can be done with one-size … Continue reading Connecting the Dots: Teaching How to Think →

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