life is a rum go guv’nor, and that’s the truth

Introducing Models for Math

Tonight I will be leading a discussion about the NLVM, eNLVM, and a new site called Models for Math.
Models for Math is partnering with providers of interactive open content for math, including the GeoGebra community, to provide free hosting of websites where they can author and deliver online lessons. Models for Math will offer [...]

Using Technology to Teach Mathematics

Today I am presenting Using Technology Effectively to Teach Mathematics at the Utah Association of Math Teacher Educators annual meeting being held at Utah State University.

Presenting at Teachers College Columbia University

I arrived in NYC today with Bob Heal, Jim Dorward, and Patricia Moyer-Packenham. Tomorrow we are making a presentation titled “Using Virtual Manipulatives to Support the Development of Mathematical Understanding” at the Teachers College, Columbia University. Daniel McVeigh has been an advocate of our work with the NLVM for a number of years and arranged [...]

Component Fluency Hypothesis

Math problem solving procedures are important tools in a problem solver’s toolbox. Fluency at using those procedures frees up cognitive resources for problem solving. This is the component fluency hypothesis described by van Merriënboer in his book Training Complex Cognitive Skills and in an ETR&D article. These algorithmic skills are not everything though. Common taxonomies [...]

PSLC Theoretical Framework Wiki Opened

Recently the Pittsburgh Science of Learning Center (PSLC) opened public access to a wiki version of their theoretical framework which had previously only been available in PDF format. Kurt VanLehn, one of the PSLC directors, and a pioneer in the field of intelligent tutoring systems, serves as editor. The framework attempts to provide a cohesive [...]

I am no good at math!

Why is it that students so often claim “I am no good at math”? Here is one theory:

In primary grades the major emphasis is on recall of basic math facts (e.g. 3 + 5).
Many kids aren’t wired for simple recall (they aren’t good at memorizing). I’m not.
Commonly used instructional approaches don’t give the immediate feedback [...]

UAMTE meeting report

Saturday I attended and presented at the Utah Association of Math Teacher Educators (UAMTE) meeting in SLC and benefited greatly.Catherine Lewis of MILLS College presented an excellent keynote on Lesson Study. Catherine illustrated the process using video vignettes and made a strong case for its benefit. Resources she suggested for further learning about lesson study: [...]

D-Lib Math Tools DL article

I just read an article by SRI researchers that reports on a user study of the Math Tools DL. As one of the participants in the study I was interested to see what they had to say. The basic structure of the report was to: (a) summarize the results, (b) propose representative personas, and (c) [...]

Do teachers want lessons or the building blocks?

Yesterday in a discussion with an NSDL evaluator who is also an ElEd Prof., he told me that research has shown that teachers would rather be given the parts from which to build lessons, than pre-completed lessons. I have asked him for more details about the claim and what data it is based on, but [...]

Technology replaces teachers?

The fear that technology will replace teachers has a long and storied history. It merits a close look.As has been repeatedly claimed, the use of the technology in the classroom is changing the role of teachers (or at least has the potential to change the role of teacher). My experience is that this scares teachers. [...]