Sunday, February 24, 2013

Project #10: Finding the Right Tool

There was a surprising amount of work involved in finding the right technological program to enhance my future students' program. This was a project I wanted to do well in because I look forward to technology being incorporated in the hardest place it could be incorporated in: the math classroom. Sure we've got fun brain games that students love, but they are mostly paper, board game, or basic item (blocks, legos etc) bound. Because I was more intrigued at the current possibilities, I went ahead and found several technologically advanced math programs. I scoured pinterest, Ted Talks, and even bugged a high school math teacher for some advice on where to find these programs and I came up with these three great resources:

1) Conrad Wolfram: Alpha Wolfram's creator

The video below will tell you more about this program and the program's creator does a wonderful job in explaining the differences of math, where we use them, and what kind of teaching we should focus on as future or current math teachers. He specifies that computers are the way to by pass the paper and pencil routine and get them learning about the other ways math REALLY helps out people, even long after they're out of high school algebra and college. Great watch!

2) Lisa Nussdorfer: the iPad with Math

Lisa has an article written about her usage of the iPad in congruence with her math curricular. She's using  ShowMe, Educreations, and Explain Everything as highlighted applications or 'apps' and equates them to Khan Academy, but more interactive. The article was posted and edited by Dan Meyer, another secondary mathematics major who sat down and did this interview with her. He made great connections to how and why we can justify buying the iPad and what it specifically does as a learning tool in the classroom. Here's a video link to the Explain Everything App (in case the above links don't work):

This application is a monumental tool that would do wonders for the education of math. There is a part in the video about being able to rewind and break down parts of your time line. This would be useful in helping to
create a lesson plan before hand, hook it up to a computer-projector screen, and teach using that. Videos, photos, and presentations are easily set up in no time. Great app, great review.

Last thought, Dan Meyers can also be found on the blogger web through this link:

Any future or current math teachers will find his interviews, opinions, and projects more than interesting.

3) Carolyn McLain: Clickers and Promethean Boards

This was my high school teacher and one of the few that made me believe in math and the powers of critically thinking. I added her to my facebook and she gladly helped me out with some technology advances she's been able to see; one being a clicker. A clicker is a simple device that most of South Alabama uses to poll students on questions that appear with a software during a slide show. The Nursing Program, Biology, and Chemistry classes of South Alabama have already implemented this technology and it works wonderfully. In addition, it's a cheap way to get students to interact with problems without having to get them to the board.

The second piece of technology she recommended to me was the Promethean Board. I've already watched a good section of videos and read articles covering this technology and it seems to be the same thing as a Smart Board but more efficient. One point the below video review reiterates is that because it's so efficient, they are able to cover more material at a faster rate and produce greater results because the children's different stylistic learning needs are met. Thanks, Mrs. McLain!

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