The S.T.E.M and Arts blog by Aurelius Raines II

The S.T.E.M and Arts blog by Aurelius Raines II
"Producers, not Consumers"

Friday, July 16, 2010

July 16, 2010

Interesting Experience...

On Thursday, the camp went to see a play at the Museum. At one point in the play, the character asked the children to all yell out the subject that they feared the most. Imagine my horror as a few hundred children from all different kinds of schools, races, and socio-economic backgrounds yelled, "MATH!"

Now, to be fair, I grew up with the same anxiety when ever it came to Math class. I took this anxiety all the way through college. It wasn't until I started my education as a teacher that it occurred to me that I wasn't such a bad Math student, I had bad teachers. In their defence, we've all had bad Math. We've had bad Math teachers for the past 150 years. The tragic part is that we only seem to be getting worse.

So this is my passion as a teacher, I don't want to repeat the mistakes of the past. Who does? Can I create a classroom that extoles the positive, creative, and beautiful aspects of Math. Can I create a student body where the student who hates Math is the anomaly?

We'll see.

Right now I'm reading two books that are giving me new insight on Math and how I teach it. The first is "The Number Devil" by Hans Magnus Enzensberger. It's  like Euclid in Wonderland.
The second is "A Mathematician's Apology" by G.H. Hardy.  This is only a 50 page booklet and definatly worth the read, especially for educators.  Here is a link to the PDF.

What We Did This Week...

Do to some minor schedule changes, We were not able to have our quiz this week. So we will take it next week. In the meantime, we were able to have some book club-style discussions and do some comprehension exercises.

We made practiced entering poll data into a spreadsheet and then using the computer to change the data into graphs. It was a great experience because we got a chance to experiment and see which kind of graph did the best job of communicating our data. Here is an example of our work.

What We Are Doing Next Week...

We will be going to Treasure Island to take our poll.

On Monday we will be watching Romeo and Juliet. Bring some popcorn!

Student of the Week

Kamaal Power
Kamaal loves Math and hates chairs. He always has a good attitude and he's a good friend. He wants to be an engineer, so he helps us build Goldberg Machines to keep Tom away.

Snack Family

The Patterson's!

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