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Ways to use technology in math class

Here are some ways you can use technology in your math class which are more interesting and innovative than using an interactive white board or having students watch instructional videos. Note that these ideas are all examples of potential student uses of technology.

Students could:

DIY Catapults!

Fork catapult - side view

One of my jobs at my current school is work on mathematics enrichment projects with three 4th grade students. For the past couple of weeks, in between their camps, my camp, and other end of year events, we have been working on looking into a mathematics modelling task, specifically, a fork catapult. The 4th grade boys and I completed this project over a series of 3 lessons with me, and 2 more lessons working on it independently between our sessions.

Pay Down Debt First, or Keep Savings Intact?

My mother has offered to give us a small amount of money, which we can either use to pay down most of our debt, or we can put into a savings account, and then pay down the debt over time.

My wife and I have been debating which is the better course of action. After playing around in Excel, I decided to write a script to help us resolve this issue. See http://davidwees.com/javascript/debtsavings/

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Learning Math Through Programming

My previous article focused on using programming as an example of applying math one already knows to a different context. The purpose of this article is to describe how one could, through programming, learn a new mathematical concept.

Applying Math in Programming

The purpose of this post is to show an example of using math in the context of programming. I've written the post as I created the project, to try and outline my thinking during this process as much as I can. This is an example of me applying math that I know to a different context, creating a spiral of numbers. In a future post I plan on exploring what learning new mathematics through programming could look like.

Math in the Real World - Video

I've created a video summary of the workshop that I facilitated recently on math in the real world. You can watch it below.

My presentation slides for the original workshop are here.

I'm moving to NYC

Math in music

I'm always on the look-out for ways of finding connections between mathematics and other areas of knowledge. Music is one of the areas of knowledge that I know has some similarities with mathematics, and so I've been brainstorming ways one could incorporate music into a mathematics classroom. Here are a few examples.

Colouring problems

I'm currently working on math enrichment activities with some 3rd and 4th grade students. Aside from using some standard resources for enrichment, I'm finding that I can find challenging problems from different areas of mathematics and find ways to introduce the main concept to students in a context they understand.

Paper folding activities

I've been playing with paper folding recently, and exploring the mathematics involved. I'm simply amazed by the number of mathematical ideas that can be represented by paper folding, so I thought I would share a few of my discoveries here.

Sequences

Folded in half

Paper folded in quarters

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