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Showing posts from November, 2015

Building a Growth Mindset in Schools

Welcome to Chapter 2 of Mindsets in the Classroom : "What are Some Ways to Begin Building a Growth Mindset School Culture?" This post is part of a book blog hop I'm doing with my wonderful team, and the first chapter can be found on Brigid's blog, Math Giraffe . While chapter 1 focused more on the background of fixed and growth mindsets, chapter 2's focus is on how to create a growth mindset culture within the school. Ideally, to help students develop a growth mindset, all individuals in a school would have a growth mindset, from teachers to aids to secretaries to administrators. Ricci recommends that all members of the school go through professional development in order to work toward adopting a growth mindset. With this goal in mind, she outlines a training plan that includes seven different steps. Several of these steps include educating the various members of the school community (teachers, students, and parents) about our amazing brains, including ideas l

Chapter 2 -"What's Going Wrong in Classrooms?"

The preface , introduction, and chapter 1 of this book have been very interesting, and I can't wait to keep reading! In the meantime, here are some highlights from chapter 2: Boaler begins chapter 2 by discussing "math wars," where the most important issue is the books the teachers will use rather than the methods. She describes a particular situation at a school district where the school had previously abandoned traditional textbooks and instead used difficult, engaging problem solving that led to student success. Some parents were not happy with this approach and worked to dismantle the program. They were successful, and now instruction in that district is more "traditional," with teachers lecturing and students working in isolation. Boaler goes on to discuss the idea that many math classes employ passive learning - students follow and memorize methods instead of learning to inquire, ask questions, and solve problems. Students taught with passive approac

What's Math Got to Do With It - Intro and Chapter 1

In the introduction to What's Math Got to Do With It , Boaler notes interesting trends - many adults say they hated math in school, but like math in their work. Many adults enjoy activities like Sudoku, that require logical thinking, but they did not enjoy their math experiences in school. The math that is needed for working situations is logical thinking, comparing numbers, analyzing and reasoning. People need to be able to reason, problem solve and apply methods to new situations. An official report examining math needed in the workplace revealed that estimation is the most useful math activity. Boaler references Conrad Wolfram's TED talk in which he talks about math as a four-step process: posing a question, constructing a model to help answer the question, performing a calculation, and converting the model back to the real-world solution by seeing if it answers the question. Boaler shares that her book will identify the problems that American students encoun

Why I'm Not Teaching Decimal Operations "Rules"

This post has been moved to:

Math Mistakes Lead to Brain Growth

I've been reading the book What's Math Got to Do With It, by Jo Boaler, published in 2008 and republished in 2015. When I started reading, I was a little disappointed that I hadn't found the book sooner - there is so much interesting information! The preface alone captured me, because Ms. Boaler explains that, based on recent brain research, anyone can learn math to high levels. She has created an online course, How to Learn Math , for students to learn about how brain research supports the idea that anyone can learn math - being good at math is not a genetic predisposition. She also discusses a site she created called YouCubed , which I've been using to find tasks for my students to work on. (I just visited the site and saw that she has a new book out  - Mathematical Mindsets ! I must get it!) Boaler references Carol Dweck and her book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success (I'm reading this one too), which is based on the idea that those with a growth

Problem of the Week #7

All problems are now on my new site: Happy Tuesday! I got up at 4:30 this morning (again) - because my dog decided to start barking (again). He's getting older and has started waking up pretty early most days!  So, instead of trying to get a little more sleep on the couch after I took him out, I figured I'd work on my problem of the week! This one is an area/perimeter-related problem, with answer key included. Enjoy! Click to access Link to access all problem of week problems.

Problem of the Week, # 6

This resource and all other Problem of the Week freebies are now found  HERE .