Showing posts with label mathematics lesson plans. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mathematics lesson plans. Show all posts

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Coral Reefs and Math

This evening I stumbled upon a set of National Geographic illustrations depicting coral reef food webs. Students can scroll through the set of seven illustrations to learn vocabulary terms associated with each part of the coral reef ecosystem. The vocabulary is labeled on each illustration.

After looking at the coral reef food webs illustrations I jumped into another National Geographic resource. The Coral Reef Fish Survey Simulation is a lesson plan that combines information about ecosystems with a lesson about estimation. In the simulation students learn about four survey methods that students use to estimate fish populations. After learning about the four methods students use the Belt Transects method in a physical simulation conducted in your classroom (or another large room). The simulation is designed for elementary school mathematics lessons.

The Reefs At Risk project at World Resources International offers a Google Earth Tour of six coral reef regions around the world. You can watch the tour in the video below.


Monday, November 12, 2012

Math Lessons Using Google SketchUp

3DVinci's SketchUp page has some very good resource for mathematics teachers, particularly Geometry teachers. 3DVinci presents a collection of mathematics projects that students can do using Google SketchUp. If you've never used SketchUp, don't worry. 3DVinci hosts video tutorials that will show you everything you need to know to get started using Google SketchUp to teach mathematics.

Applications for Education 
3DVinci's SketchUp projects could be a good resource for teachers who are looking for lesson ideas that will get their students to think about mathematics in a way that isn't just numbers and equations on paper (virtual or physical).

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Fetch! Lunch Rush! - An Augmented Reality Math Game

Fetch! Lunch Rush! is a neat use of augmented reality to create a mathematics lesson for young students. The free iPhone app (it also worked on my iPad 2) was developed by PBS Kids. The purpose of the app is to get kids moving about a room in search of numbers that are the correct answer to the questions posed to them on the app. Students read the arithmetic problem on the app then search out the correct answer. When they think they have found the correct answer they scan it with their iPhone or iPad to find out if they are correct or not.

Applications for Education
To have your students play Fetch! Lunch Rush! you do have to download and print some game pieces to distribute about your classroom. After you have done that you're ready to let your students play the game. The app allows up to four players to use the same device.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Illustrative Mathematics

Illustrative Mathematics is a free resource for K-12 mathematics teachers. On Illustrative Mathematics teachers can find lesson activities aligned to standards for every grade level. When it is appropriate the activities include drawings and diagrams.

Anyone can access the activities posted on Illustrative Mathematics. You can rate activities and share your own activities if you register for an Illustrative Mathematics account.

Applications for Education
Sites like Illustrative Mathematics can be helpful for new teachers who are looking for lesson ideas. Likewise, Illustrative Mathematics could be helpful for experienced teachers exploring new ideas for teaching what they have taught for years.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Math Fun with Mudd Math Facts

The math department of Harvey Mudd College has a website full of fun math facts. Mudd Math Fun Facts has an easy to search database of math facts designed to stimulate thought and make students look at mathematics in a different light. Each fun fact is accompanied by a problem, diagram, and short explanation of a fun mathematics concept.

Applications for Education
Mudd Math Fun Facts is designed for use with introductory college math courses, but it could also be a great website for some high school mathematics classes. The math fun facts can be used to expose college-bound students to some higher order mathematics concepts and spark some curiosity about mathematics. If you have a class website or blog you can link to Mudd Math Fun Facts and provide students with a fun fact of the day that they can explore on their own.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Math Landing - K-6 Math Resources

Math Landing is a database of mathematics lessons and interactive resources for use in elementary school. You can search for lessons and interactive resources by grade level and or by mathematics topic. You can search Math Landing and access the resources without registering. If you do register you can participate in the Math Landing message board community.

Applications for Education
You could probably find most of the resources that are indexed by Math Landing by searching the web,  but it would probably take you much longer than it would if you use Math Landing's search tools. The next time you're looking for a new math lesson, give Math Landing a try.

H/T to Donna Murray

Thursday, May 10, 2012

How to Smile and Find Science Lesson Plans

How to Smile is a great place for teachers to find ideas and directions for hands-on math, science, and engineering lessons. How to Smile is community site to which teachers can contribute their lessons and materials for others to use. You can search for lessons by keyword or by browsing the popular activities lists. Registered users can bookmark materials within How to Smile. How to Smile has a free iPhone app that you can use to search for lessons.

Applications for Education
Whether you're looking for a brand new lesson plan or are just looking for some ideas to tweak your existing lessons, How to Smile could be a great resource for you. From what I saw by browsing the lessons, it appears that the majority of the lessons are geared toward the K-8 audience.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Mount Everest, How Tall Is It? - A Mathematics Mystery

Image Credit: Carsten.Nebel
Last night I started to read Mount Everest, The Reconnaissance 1921 which I downloaded for free from Google Books. In the introduction there is a three page explanation of the methods used to measure the height of Mount Everest. An explanation of the differences in measurements is also provided in the introduction. Part of that explanation includes differences in snow fall, cyclical deviations of gravity, and differences atmospheric refraction when observations were made. I'm not a mathematics teacher and will never pretend to be one, but reading that introduction did get me thinking about a possible mathematics lesson.

Applications for Education
Turn to pages 10 through 13 of Mount Everest, The Reconnaissance 1921 and read about the difficulties of accurately measuring Mount Everest in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries. It's interesting to note that most accepted measurements were more than 100 feet higher than today's accepted measurement. Tell your students that Mount Everest has shrunk over the last 100 years and ask them to solve the mystery of the shrinking mountain. 

On a mildly related note and on a promotion of a Mainer note, Snow in the Kingdom: My Storm Years on Everest by Ed Webster is one of the best books ever written about Mount Everest. If you enjoy good adventure stories and or stories about overcoming personal struggles, I think you will enjoy Webster's book. For my money, and I own two copies of it, it is far better than Krakauer's Into Thin Air.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Get the Math - Multimedia Algebra Challenges

Get the Math is a super website designed to provide teachers and students with Algebra-based mathematics challenges. Get the Math tries to put the challenges in the context of the  "real world" scenarios of fashion design, video game design, and music production.

Get the Math features short videos of professionals in each of the three areas explaining and showing how mathematics is used in their professions. After watching the videos students try to complete a series of challenges based upon the work done in the professions of fashion design, video game design, and music production. For example, after watching the Math in Fashion video students have to design a shirt to match a specific price point.

The video below is an introduction to using Get the Math in your classroom.

Watch Get the Math: An Intro on PBS. See more from THIRTEEN Kids.


Applications for Education
Get the Math could be a good resource for Algebra teachers to introduce some contextual challenges to their students.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Math in the News - Will the NBA Play This Year?

Media 4 Math has a nice regular feature called Math in the News. Math in the News offers ideas for short mathematics lessons based on current news stories. The current lesson that grabbed my attention is Will There Be an NBA Season? The lesson focuses on using revenue and expense reports to determine profitability. You can view the lesson in the Slideshare presentation below.


Applications for Education
Media 4 Math's Math in the News lessons could be one way to try to reach students with the idea that math is integrated into much more than might imagine. The NBA lesson could be particularly useful with young people who enjoy sports, but might not enjoy mathematics.

H/T to Jim Lerman.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Mathematics in Movies

Mathematics in Movies is a website developed by Oliver Knill, a Harvard Mathematics professor. Mathematics in Movies is a collection of video clips from popular movies and television shows in which references to mathematics are made. One clip that I enjoyed comes from an episode of The Office in which Oscar tries to explain the concept of a budget surplus to Michael. I've embedded the episode below.



Applications for Education
The video clips from Mathematics in Movies could be a fun way to introduce a mathematics lesson. The clips might also be useful as a break from a traditional lesson plan for a day. Students can enjoy the clips while reviewing mathematics concepts.

Monday, September 26, 2011

TenMarks - A Free Math Program for Your Class

Disclosure: TenMarks recently became an advertiser on Free Technology for Teachers. Prior to that I wrote about it a couple of times without any input from them.

TenMarks offers a free online mathematics program designed to supplement your in-classroom mathematics instruction. The free TenMarks program covers materials for students in grades two through ten. In the program there are more than 2,000 video lessons available to students to view on demand. Teachers can use the TenMarks program to assign lessons and problems to individual students or to an entire class. Teachers can track the progress of individual students and the progress of an entire class. Watch the video below to learn more about the free TenMarks mathematics program for your classroom.


One of the questions that I'm often asked about free services is, "how can we know it will stay online and free?" While I can never answer that definitively (see Ning as example of a company changing policies) I can pass along the information that TechCrunch reported TenMarks as recently receiving $3million in venture capital. So hopefully, that keeps TenMarks going for a while.

GeoGebraTube - Shared Resources for GeoGebra Users

GeoGebraTube is a community site for teachers who teach with GeoGebra to share and find a wide range free resources. On GeoGebraTube visitors will find user-created tutorials, lessons, and worksheets. Visitors can search for resources by age group, language, and material type. All materials are freely available for noncommercial reuse.

Applications for Education
If you're a mathematics teacher whose school is using GeoGebra, GeoGebraTube could be a good reference to bookmark. When you start planning your next lesson browse through GeoGebraTube before trying to reinvent the wheel (or a lesson plan that someone else has already published).

H/T to Mathematics and Multimedia.