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Mr Tuller’s Hand

Mr Tuller’s Hand

I have to give credit to estimation180 for this one. If you haven't been to this fabulous website you have to go there immediately! I was totally surprised at how my students figured this one out. It amazed me how close some of them came to the real answer with some very simple methods. Also there were some extremely complex methods, I wish i had taken a picture of one of them a student did on the white board. It was awesome! I have to give credit to estimation180 for this one. If you haven’t been to this fabulous website you have to go there immediately! I was totally surprised at how my students figured this one out. It amazed me how … read more
Mathematical Modeling

Mathematical Modeling

Okay, so this is one that has been bugging me. As the Common Core starts to get underway, I have seen a lot of activities (mostly at the grade school level but some High School as Well) that claim to be addressing the Mathematical Practice of Mathematical Modeling. Most of these look something like folding some paper, playing with m&m's, or some other food based manipulative and/or drawing pictures so students can see the math. These activities are great for students to be able to see and feel the math they are working with. However, this is not addressing the Mathematical Modeling standard of the Mathematical Practices. Okay, so this is one that has been bugging me. As the Common Core starts to get underway, I have seen a lot of activities (mostly at the grade school level but some High School as Well) that claim to … read more
Building Persistence

Building Persistence

One thing that separates a great student from an average student, that separates a student from a teacher, is persistence.

What do I mean by persistence? Well... what i mean is the ability and the desire to stay with a math problem until a correct solution is reached. I think that every student can learn how to do math, how to do algorithms and formulas, how to solve for x. However what makes a student truly proficient is not the ability to do these things but the ability to solve more complex problems. The real secret is to teach your students persistence. One thing that separates a great student from an average student, that separates a student from a teacher, is persistence. What do I mean by persistence? Well… what i mean is the ability and the desire to stay with a … read more

“The Story of 1″

“The Story of 1″

I just found this incredible video. I was searching through my Netflix account and there it was... The Story of 1. It is a ninety minute video that takes the viewer through the history of math in an extremely fun and engaging way. I just found this incredible video. I was searching through my Netflix account and there it was… The Story of 1. It is a ninety minute video that takes the viewer through the history of math in an extremely fun … read more
Using Let’s Practice Geometry Worksheets

Using Let’s Practice Geometry Worksheets

After Writing Let's Practice Geometry, I have since been using them in my own classroom, and have been getting feedback about how other teachers and parents have been using them to help their students. Here are few of the best Ideas. After Writing Let’s Practice Geometry, I have since been using them in my own classroom, and have been getting feedback about how other teachers and parents have been using them to help their students. Here are few of the best … read more
Using Data

Using Data

More useful than you think!

It seems that more and more these days education is turning to a data driven model. This trend seems to be driven by the more recent emphasis placed on high stakes testing. For good or for ill this isn't going anywhere. How can you make use of this instead of being intimidated by it. I'll tell you what I've done. More useful than you think! It seems that more and more these days education is turning to a data driven model. This trend seems to be driven by the more recent emphasis placed on high stakes testing. For good or … read more

Mental Math Activities

Mental Math Activities

Mental Calculating

The first is direct teaching and practice of how to do everyday calculations like 27 plus 68, or 14587 times 7, or taking 37 percent of 460 etc. It sounds like students would hate this, but ify you them the tricks, they eat it up with a spoon. The absolute best book to teach them from is Secrets of Mental Math by Arthur Benjamin. You could probably find it your local chain bookstore, or definitely on amazon (just click the title). Just buy it and learn the tricks. Then, For about 5 mins each class, alternate between teaching the tricks and giving them practice. For practice I usually project about 4 problems, have them do them in their heads, and write down the answers only. Some students will try and do it with pencil and paper don't let them. At the end of every topic I give a little quiz to help keep them accountable for learning. Mental Calculating The first is direct teaching and practice of how to do everyday calculations like 27 plus 68, or 14587 times 7, or taking 37 percent of 460 etc. It sounds like students would hate this, but ify you … read more

Grading Homework

Grading Homework

Grading Homework can be such a chore. However, it can also be an effective way to give important feedback to students on how they are progressing and what they can be doing better. Here are a few ways to make homework work! Grading Homework can be such a chore. However, it can also be an effective way to give important feedback to students on how they are progressing and what they can be doing better. Here are a few ways to make … read more
Grade Anxiety Cure

Grade Anxiety Cure

Okay so just about a week after I wrote the article on a technique for curing test anxiety I encountered a new student who had all the classic signs. The Student seemed very bright, capable and hardworking yet of course completely flunked the first test they took. I offered the student a bit of tutoring after school and found that in fact the students math skills were very strong, and working on the assignment was not difficult for them at all. I taught the student how to overcome Test Anxiety, The student did all that I asked, studied hard and insulted the test, but yet still received an F. Okay so just about a week after I wrote the article on a technique for curing test anxiety I encountered a new student who had all the classic signs. The Student seemed very bright, capable and hardworking yet of course … read more