We All Make Mistakes







We All Make Mistakes



Edited By Nate Goza @thegozaway

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Online Professional Development Sessions

Making the Most of Mistakes
Presented by Peg Cagle (@pegcagle)

We need to do more than normalize errors in our classrooms – we need to leverage them! Examine ways to capitalize on student mistakes to drive instruction, deepen homework and frame quizzes/tests as assessments of and as learning, leading to greater student agency and lower risk aversion.

To join the meeting when it starts at 9:00 PM Eastern (or RSVP beforehand), click here.

Last week at Global Math Steve Wyborney shared ways to promote mathematical discourse using animated illustrations.  Click here to check out his session.

Word From the #MTBoS

Teachers Make Mistakes Too!  #lessonfail

No one reading this is perfect, we all know that. At the same time, it is easy for us to mask our flaws when we are around other professionals. I certainly feel this way, and I was reminded of it when I was reading Annie Perkins post #Lessonfail and Self Doubt. Annie tells a full story of a conversation that began in the chat room of Tracy Zager’s Global Math Department talk, #lessonclose. This would go on to make the full rounds on the #MTBoS as it spilled over into a Twitter conversation, and then became a blog post, to which others replied with their own blog posts.

Some of the notable posts that followed were from Ilona Vashchyshyn, Annie Forest, and Madison Knowe. One thing Madison speaks about is the need to use her blog as a place to show off all sides of her professional life, not just the highlight reel. “From here on, this blog is not a place to show off myself, it’s a place to be known in all my professional shortcomings and inquires.” While it may be hard to imagine yourself wanting to write about your own #lessonfail, perhaps it is worth it to think that teachers who are in the place that Annie was are hoping for “..a bit more of, “I’ve been there, too.”

Written by Carl Oliver (@carloliwitter)

It’s the end of the year, and many of us are reflecting on the year – things we wish we had done better, or looking forward, things we want to do next year.  For many of us, myself included, this process may involve (in part) some metaphorical (I hope!) self-flagellation.  But people are writing hopefully about these practices, and in the interest of letting yourself off the hook just a bit, and having a more balanced perspective towards your future school years, here are a few good reads.
 
In Things We’re Going to Need You To Stop Saying, part 5 the Curmudgeon (self-names) debunks several blanket statements that may fit into 140 characters (ahem), statements that are ultimately harmful to good teaching.  Examples include:
If your exam questions only use integers then they aren’t Real World(tm) Questions.
If your exam questions require a calculator, then you’re asking the wrong questions.
 
Curmudgeon points out that the learning curve requires questions with all types of input, which anyone who has designed a lesson with scaffolding well knows.
 

Telanna, over at Chasing Number Sense jumped feet first into a fray of student feedback.  Responding to a call to action from in a course with Kaneka Turner, Telanna collected data from 50 3rd graders on their experiences in math class and their perceptions of themselves as math students.  

THEN, she worked with them to dig a little deeper into that data in order to gain insight into her practice in the classroom.  Talk about facing oneself as a teacher fearlessly!  I love the way she ended her post:  “I am glad I did not just end my year with the assumption that I know what is going on through my students’ heads as they enter and leave my math classes. I still wonder what I did wrong, what I need to change next year so that my students have this realization about the nature of math as a subject earlier than May.”
 

I think Don Steward gets written about in this newsletter at least every quarter; I myself have contributed several posts about his website.  Is there no end to the man’s brilliance?  This came up in my feed this morning:
                                    
Of course, this exercise came with well-scaffolded examples of increasing difficulty, and it’s a great Open Middle type of problem.  Thanks, Don!
 

Food for thought:  an article in the Atlantic at the end of April, How Does Race Affect a Student’s Math Education? discusses the subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) ways in which ‘whiteness’ influences the way students of color, and particularly black students, are taught math.  It’s an interesting and important read, as is the paper it references “A Framework for Understanding Whiteness in Mathematics Education”.  We’ve got the whole summer to reflect on how we can transform our classrooms into equitable spaces.

Cheers –
Wendy Menard
@wmukluk

One thing I’ve personally enjoyed over the course of this year is watching how Kyle Pearce has extended his passion for math education by really diving into K-5 mathematics.  Until this year, Kyle was a secondary math consultant, which is the same as a math coach for our American friends. He now has the pleasure of working with K-12 teachers and has graciously shared his journey with us on his blog. Last week at #OAME17, Kyle gave an Ignite Talk entitled The Beauty of Elementary Mathematics and he shared his slide deck and notes here. Whether you’re a K-5 teacher or not, you’ll walk away with a greater appreciation for elementary math…and Prince.
 

    

Written by Graham Fletcher (@gfletchy)

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This Week at Global Math







This Week at Global Math



Edited By Brian Bushart @bstockus

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Using Animation to Promote Discourse
Presented by Steve Wyborney (@SteveWyborney)

Animation propels mathematical discourse. The simple concept of visual change invites wonder and provides ample space for multiple perspectives. Animated illustrations also provide a clear, common context for discourse. This session of the Global Math Department will feature a wide range of animated questions which will offer insights to viewers and feature ready-to-use animated questions which can be downloaded at the conclusion of the session.

To join the meeting when it starts at 9pm Eastern (or RSVP if it’s before 9pm), click here.

Did you miss last week’s session? Never fear! Click here to listen to Tracy Zager’s talk about different purposes, techniques, and formats for closing your math lessons.

The #MTBoS Never Sleeps

The Math Missus and More!

I just found out, via Jocelyn Dagenais (@jocedage) about a wonderful new Canadian series on the CBCNL YouTube channel, called “The Math Missus”. Catchy title, no? It deals with the myth that there is such a thing as a “math person” – that you’ve either got it or you don’t. I still struggle with the question myself, even as a math teacher, so it helps to hear from the experts. Bonus that they’re from my country of Canada!

John Golden (@mathhombre) shared this post by Harry O’Malley (@harrytomalley) about how simulations are a better way to represent data than traditional graphs. It seems related to (but I’m not sure) my recent thoughts about how I can get my students to model a function’s rate of change as opposed to the shape of its curve. At any rate, it really struck a note.

I once wrote a post on my own blog about being an explainaholic. Michael Pershan’s post about going beyond the beyond in our explanations (@mpershan) offered me some some intervention – specifically how to get better at explaining. And of course, Michael explains explaining very well!

Written by Audrey McLaren (@a_mcsquared)

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This Week: One Question and some Shuffling!







This Week: One Question and some Shuffling!



Edited By Sahar Khatri @MyMathscape

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Online Professional Development Sessions

#LessonClose: Math coach Tracy Zager sees a pattern in lessons: teachers often put far more energy into planning and implementing the open of the lesson than they do for the close. The open is essential for engagement, motivation, and access, but the close is where students have the opportunity to take a broader perspective on their learning, make new connections, cement understanding, and generate new questions. In this session, we’ll explore different purposes, techniques, and formats for lesson closes. We’ll also discuss different strategies for dealing with the main obstacle to thoughtful closes: limited time.9 PM EST!

Last week we took a break. Make sure to join us for the webinar tonight.

Great Blogging Actions

4 Students, 1 Question, 1 Wish

A recent blog post by Joe Schwartz reminds me how important it is to both learn about and care for our students as much as possible. In his post, 4 Students, 1 Question, 1 Wish, Joe details his teaching relationship with 4 students, their personality traits, and their math thinking around one single question.

Imagine knowing as much as Joe about all of our students so we can teach to the student. Imagine writing a blog post about 4 of your students each week detailing your experience and journey both of you are on. Imagine finding out as much as possible about four of your students and then being able to teach them math better as result. I find Joe’s post inspiring, refreshing, and encouraging. Thanks Joe!

~by Andrew Stadel (@mr_stadel)

The Shuffle Test

I’m always looking for new ideas for assessment, and Joe Herbert’s recent posts found here and here give an outline of something called a shuffle test.  Joe says “Not only is a shuffle test a great way for all students to access and demonstrate mastery of challenging content, it also has the added benefit of being a very effective status intervention.”

I myself have realized in the last couple years or so of my teaching how much status can make or break a student’s experience in my classroom.  Joe mentions the wonderful work that Ilana Horn has contributed to this.  If you haven’t read her book yet, Strength in Numbers, it is definitely a must-read for any math teacher.

Definitely go check out Joe’s post, because this looks like a great opportunity to offer more challenging content than usual on an assessment, get students working together, and reduce status all while still under the umbrella of students demonstrating mastery.

~ by Matthew Engle (@pickpocketbme)

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