In this article we illustrate how one teacher used PhET cannonball simulation as an instructional tool to improve students' algebraic reasoning in a fifth grade classroom. Three instructional phases effective to implementation of simulation included: Free play, Structured inquiry and, Synthesizing ideas.
Manouchehri Azita, Ozturk Ayse and Sanjari Azin
Erin E. Baldinger, Matthew P. Campbell and Foster Graif
Students need opportunities to construct definitions in mathematics. We describe a sorting activity that can help students construct and refine definitions through discussion and argumentation. We include examples from our own work of planning and implementing this sorting activity to support constructing a definition of linear function.
Rebecca Vinsonhaler and Alison G. Lynch
This article focuses on students use and understanding of counterexamples and is part of a research project on the role of examples in proving. We share student interviews and offer suggestions for how teachers can support student reasoning and thinking and promote productive struggle by incorporating counterexamples into the classroom.
The paper discusses technology that can help students master four triangle centers -- circumcenter, incenter, orthocenter, and centroid. The technologies are a collection of web-based apps and dynamic geometry software. Through use of these technologies, multiple examples can be considered, which can lead students to generalizations about triangle centers.
Sherin Gamoran Miriam and James Lynn
This article explores three processes involved in attending to evidence of students' thinking, one of the Mathematics Teaching Practices in Principles to Actions: Ensuring Mathematical Success for All. These processes, explored during an activity on proportional relationships, are discussed in this article, another installment in the series.
Sarah K. Bleiler-Baxter, Sister Cecilia Anne Wanner O.P. and Jeremy F. Strayer
Explore what it means to balance love for mathematics with love for students.
Aaron M. Rumack and DeAnn Huinker
Capturing students' own observations before solving a problem propelled a culture of sense making by meeting needs typical of middle school learners.
Lee Melvin M. Peralta
One of the many benefits of teaching mathematics is having the opportunity to encounter unexpected mathematical connections while planning lessons or exploring ideas with students and colleagues. Consider the two problems in figure 1.
To introduce sinusoidal functions, I use an animation of a Ferris wheel rotating for 60 seconds, with one seat labeled You (see fig. 1). Students draw a graph of their height above ground as a function of time with appropriate units and scales on both axes. Next a volunteer shares his or her graph. I then ask someone to share a different graph. I choose one student with a curved graph (see fig. 2a) and another with a piece-wise linear (sawtooth) graph (see fig. 2b).