Friday, September 23, 2016

Math Links for Week Ending Sept 23, 2016

It took me a while to finally put this post together but I finished it this week. I played Pokemon Go all summer with my kids and, as it turns out, there is a lot of data that can be pulled out to use in class. From single variable to scatter plots. In this post I let you know where the data is and how you can mine it with your kids. There are some sample sets already if you want where you can get started and Google forms to help you collect your own.
Curriculum Tags: Gr7, Gr8, MBF3C, MAP4C, MDM4U
A couple of support posts from the Desmos team. First a guide to creating Desmos activities. But it's not the kind of guide you might be used to. When you hear "guide" you might think that this is a technical "how to" but it actually is a pedagogical how to. They give tips on how to make your activities good for students. Totally worth a read. Secondly, they continue tweak and add features to activity builder. New is their Classroom Conversion Toolkit. The anonymizer feature has been around but now there is a tool to adjust the pace of the class so kids can't go too fast as well as a tool to pause the entire class. Man, if you are not using Desmos, what is holding you up?
Curriculum Tags: All

We may have all played Two Truths and a Lie so why not apply it to just about any topic in math class. In this case @mathequalslove does so for significant figures. This is really good for just about any topic that is basic and boring but we need kids to practice. 
Curriculum Tags: All

I love this post from @mathycathy. She starts with an example of a "teaching video" where the topic is zero exponents and all they basically do is tell students the rule and call it "magic". She is rightfully upset but exacts her revenge the MTBoS way by creating a simple Desmos activity that allows students to discover the properties of the zero exponent and finishes with a card sort.
Curriculum Tags: MPM1D, MFM2P

A few weeks ago I mentioned that @robertkaplinski started a movement using the hashtag #ObserveMe. Now he is offering some troubleshooting tips for when it doesn't go as you had planned.
Curriculum Tags: All

I love this term "mathematical zombies". The idea is summed up best with this quote:
"Students who can reproduce all the steps of a problem while failing to evidence any understanding of why or how their procedures work."
Dan goes on to use the calculation of z-scores to follow through with an example of an extreme case. But the point is that it is pretty easy to have kids do mechanical calculations but if we don't want to create these zombies, we need to do something much different from what many of us received as students.
Curriculum Tags: All

Call it performance art if you will but the cool thing here is that they are going to create a massive image from pixels coloured by hand using the idea that each pixel uses different intensities of red, blue and green. For one you certainly could do a lesson on how these three colours mix to make all others but you could also use it to connect to percentages.
Curriculum Tags: Gr7, Gr8

Here is the new and old version of the "how popular is your birthday" visualization. Regardless of the one you use, it does give you a false impression that some birthdays are way more popular than others. Regardless of which you like, here you can get the data collected and an interactive graph.
Curriculum Tags: MDM4U

Some nice examples of transformations from @mrhonner
Curriculum Tags: Gr7, Gr8

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