Friday, 6 January 2017

Two of My Favourites - 2016 in Review

Favourite Number One:  Clearing up Misconceptions

This is an excerpt from a post I wrote earlier this year.  The tool I used is called 'My Favourite No".  I found that with less confident students, using "My Favourite No" on a regular basis both cleared up misconceptions and helped students to feel that they are not 'alone' in the classroom.

 'My Favourite No'

I first learned about this strategy when I took a professional learning course called 'How to Learn Math for Teachers’, presented by Jo Boaler of Stanford University.

Leah Alcala, the presenter of 'My Favourite No'  uses a simple warm up routine to help students learn by analysing and discussing mistakes.

What I love about 'My Favourite No'

  1. It is a simple, safe technique that engages the students!  Everyone does the same problem, anonymously.
  2. When to solution cards are quickly checked, students will see that they are not alone in making mistakes.
  3. When critiquing solutions, we always look for the positives first.  What did this student do really well?
by helping students to understand that they can learn from their mistakes, as well as the mistakes of others, we can promote a growth mindset in a safe classroom environment.

My challenge to you:

Try 'My Favourite No' in your next lessons!  And send your feedback in the comments section.

Favourite Number Two: The Power of Student Centred Learning

2016 was a stellar year for active Mathematics learning in my classroom.  My goal was to work smarter, not harder than my students - and the result was astounding!  I found, by moving more toward active, student-centred learning that my students
  • developed more initiative
  • asked more questions
  • used more reasoning and justified that reasoning with their peers
  • looked to each other, not to me as their learning partners
  • became better problem solvers
  • were more engaged, 
  • embraced challenges
  • gained in self-confidence

My Favourite tools for moving towards student-centred learning were:

For  teacher inspiration, ideas, research:
Twitter feed - this could always re-inspire me after a rough day at work
Continuous Everywhere, Differentiable Nowhere   a positive, pleasure to read
dy/dan  - for great links to great teachers and ideas
TEDEd - Lessons Worth Sharing - Especially the Logic videos
YouCubed -  to keep maths accessible to all students and their parents
NCTM - Journals   Mathematics Teacher and Math Teaching in the Middle School 

For Interactive Learning Tools and resources:
Desmos - Card Sort,  graphing
Scootle - Education Services Australia - for great topic specific interactives
Twig - Maths and Science Videos and worksheets - visual, real world connections

For Student Motivation and Challenge:
NRich - try a challenge at the start of each lesson to get the students going
Desmos  - Marbleslides - My students thank you!
Stile Education  - A great, free platform to introduce Flipped Learning

My New Year Resolution: 

In 2017 I plan to continue to use these resources and tools to continue to find motivation and inspiration for the role I love - teaching students to learn and LOVE mathematics.  

1 comment :

  1. I have just started with My Favorite No recently, it's great! I think we are getting close to compiling a list of Common Nos cause I found students try to refer to ones that they previously discussed.