## Tuesday, September 4, 2012

### Day One

In the spirit of sharing and inspired by the likes of Dan, Kate, Fawn and of course Sam, this is my first blog entry.

Day 1 is complete, and I wanted to share the first thing my students did as they entered the classroom. It was a simple enough activity. It included a half sheet of paper with the question, What is Math? written on the top. Students were encouraged to answer the question in the best way they saw fit. Sentences, point form, a paragraph or two. My reason for doing this was to get a sense of how the grade 8 mind sees math after 7 years of elementary school. So now I'll open it up to anyone who happens to read this, in the style of that old favourite TV show called, FAMILY FEUD.

130 students were surveyed, top 6 answers are on the board, here is the question:

When I asked the 130 students "What is Math", what were the 6 most popular words used in their response/definition?

Secondly, I asked each student to rank from 0 to 10 their ENJOYMENT level and their CONFIDENCE level, when it comes to math class. Results were quickly put together here.

I have lots of questions here in terms of the best way to show the results, what to talk about/emphasize, and how much importance I should put into the results. But primarily I wanted to show that I can take a question and represent the data in different ways (scatterplot is the one that came to mind here). I hope to do similar things in the future and even re-do this question at the end and see if there was a shift (hopefully, up and to the right).

So there you have a couple of things to think about and perhaps comment on. Hopefully the comments will make me a better teacher. That is the goal after all, right?

There are other things floating around that need mentioning. For example, I'm sure I will be getting in on the Khanversation sooner or later. I'll also likely share things that I find way too cool to keep to myself like, what would the planets look like if they replaced our moon.

And finally I hope to tidy up the blog so that it includes all the buttons and links that make your blog look so nice. Yes, your blog. You know who you are.

Thanks for sharing, and thanks for reading.
Oh, am I supposed to sign off with my name? #firstblogproblems
I will this one time.

nico

#### 1 comment:

1. Hi There,

This is interesting indeed to ask this type of questions. Being a Mathematics teacher, I will say that "Mathematics is one of many ways to perceive the world around you! Possibly the most logical way among all..."

Having enjoyed your blog, I would like to invite you to have a look at mine too: www.ipracticemath.com

Looking forward to seeing your feedback,
Tayyab