Monday, July 25, 2011

Great educational blogs!

Here are some great educational blogs!!


Fractions, Fractions...

I am fascinated with the idea of fractions. I do feel that learning fractions is important and it does relate to everyday life. People including myself are always comparing things to fractions. I hear the term often, "I spend a fraction of my time at the gym", "I ate a fraction of the pizza." I feel that they are easy to understand.

I am not a math wiz, but I feel that it is simple to understand fractions and I am so excited to teach fractions to my students one day. I feel that manipulatives and visuals are the best way to teach fractions.

If you are trying to teach fractions I feel that using an apple and cutting it in half and then fourths really helps students visualize the idea that fractions are simply parts of a whole. There are so many creative ways that you could teach fractions. Fractions are used daily and this is a skill that students should really appreciate for the entirety of their lifetime. Here is a link to a cool video on fractions:) Enjoy!


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

As a future elementary teacher, I am really going to strive to create lessons that will impact my students in a way that will affect their everyday lives beyond just the classroom. Looking back I wish that more of my teachers would have made this a goal as well. I know of many people who charge things as though money grows on trees. A lot of times this is done because they simply do not know the ramifications this reckless spending can cost.

I feel that Americans need to take some lessons from our government…clearly they spend recklessly as well. Let’s not make the same mistakes that they do and furthermore let’s teach our students early on that unsecured debt is not the way to go. I feel that by showing students in middle school the negative effects of credit cards and the high expense of immediate gratification, we will be doing them a huge favor in the years to come.

By creating a lesson centered around credit cards and the high interest rates that go along with them we are really teaching them math and a life lesson at the same time. We must encourage our students to work hard and save their money in the future for things that they desire. Sure slapping that television, computer, or gaming system on a credit card will get you the item right away but you may end up paying three times its worth in the long run!!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Factor trees

I can remember when I was in elementary school, that the use of something as simple as a factor tree really helped me out. Factor trees really help show the relationship between numbers. Writing out factor trees can help a student visualize prime and composite numbers. I like the analogy of the factor tree as being the fingerprint of a composite number. I feel that analogies are also a good way to express a concept to a student who may be struggling with grasping it. To me factor trees are simple and they are a visual means for students to understand composite and prime numbers and their relationship. I am glad that factor trees are still being used in today's every changing curriculum to help students understand these relationships. While I applaud many of the new constructivist ideals to relay information to students in the world of mathematics, I also have some skepticism. There are some methods such as the lattice method that I find more cumbersome and frustrating than helpful. Sometimes less is more and I feel that the simplicity of the factor tree is a very effective and creative way to help students with this area of math.