Blogs on Math

Blogs on MathRSS
Philip McIntoshOctober 1, 2013

The quality and skill of the teacher is one of the most important factors (if not the most important) influencing the success of any learning environment. But you can stand at the front of a classroom and teach until you are blue in the face, and it doesn't guarantee that any learning actually happens. So what separates successful teachers from less successful ones? Anyone will tell you that it's relationships. That's why it is critical to establish and maintain positive relationships with students throughout the school year. It's also not a bad idea to get some learning to happen while you're at it.

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Mark GuraSeptember 26, 2013

Having been involved with student robotics programs for many years, I feel that robotics just may be the most perfect instructional approach currently available. It offers classroom activities that teach high-value STEM content as well as opportunities to powerfully address ELA Common Core Standards. In fact, there are connections to robotics across the full spectrum of the curriculum. Robotics is also a highly effective way to foster essential work skills like collaboration, problem solving and project management. It does all this while keeping kids so motivated and engaged that getting them to stop working and move on to the rest of the school day can be a challenge -- a good problem to have!

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Mary Beth HertzSeptember 26, 2013

CCSS.Math.Content.3.OA.B.5: Apply properties of operations as strategies to multiply and divide.

Most math instruction for younger elementary students (K-2) is based around number sense. Students are given opportunities to compare and contrast numbers, add them up, subtract them, identify place values and solve basic word problems. In third grade, students are asked to apply this knowledge to explore and recognize patterns and relationships between addition, multiplication and division.

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José VilsonSeptember 13, 2013

This summer, I got the opportunity to visit NASA Kennedy Space Center through a generous grant from the General Electric Fund and the National Science Teachers Association. The partnership sponsored around a hundred of us to go to Cocoa Beach, Florida, and partake in a series of intense professional development sessions on campus. As a math teacher, I wasn't exactly sure what my purpose was there, but I knew two things: I wanted a rocket shuttle to take home, and I wanted to pretend to be an astronaut when I went back home.

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Mary Beth HertzSeptember 4, 2013

Editor's Note: In this blog sponsored by Lego, author Mary Beth Hertz mentions her use of the Lego Mindstorm product. Hertz did not know Lego was sponsoring her blog and Lego made no request for product mentions. To best serve our audience, Edutopia is leaving the reference intact, as it reflects the facts of the author's experience and not any commercial arrangement between Lego and Edutopia.

Right now in education, it seems like everyone is talking about STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). Once again, our government has had a knee-jerk reaction to the success that other countries are having on international science and math tests. For many robotics coaches, this is all a bit "ho-hum." For decades, teams of students have been applying their knowledge of math, physics, electronics and computers to build machines that complete specific tasks and challenges. These teams have been working hand in hand with professional engineers as well as their teacher-coach, and they have been turning these experiences into internships at big-name companies and eventually into full-time careers.

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Monica BurnsSeptember 4, 2013

Aligning instruction to meet the Common Core State Standards is the new norm for educators across most of the United States. In the middle school math classroom, technology can be used to help students reach mastery of these Common Core skills. Let's take a look at a sixth grade geometry standard and how, using technology, teachers can promote engagement through student-centered exploration of this skill.

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Ainissa RamirezAugust 26, 2013

No one likes failure, the F-word, no matter how you sugarcoat it. But failure is a part of life. Sometimes things don't work out. Sometimes you don't get what you want. Stuff happens. But if we recast these situations right, we learn to create a new normal, to persevere, to learn to be more flexible, or to redirect our energies.

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Ainissa RamirezAugust 21, 2013

Humans have a few basic needs: air, food, water, clothing, shelter, belonging, intimacy and Wi-Fi. (OK, the last one is not really on the list.) Regardless of my attempt to be funny, what is no laughing matter is that we have primary needs. What might surprise you is that another primary need is the need to be creative. We are creative creatures and have been since we first existed, as evidenced by the first cave paintings formed over 40,000 years ago. But somehow in this modern day, we've forgotten that being creative is part of the human experience.

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Ainissa RamirezJuly 17, 2013

Every year, millions of students are struggling in algebra class. And, despite what the pundits say, the answer is not to get rid of math education; the answer is to fix it.

Math teachers in the U.S. have the world's hardest job, because opinions about the subject are already stacked against it. Over the years, the humanness and relevancy of math have been squeezed out, and students no longer see its significance. To get students engaged in math again, we have to add the human element back.

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Matt LevinsonJuly 16, 2013

I learned this important lesson while teaching U.S. history to 11th graders several years ago: "All bets are off outside of math class."

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