Sunday, December 20, 2009

Wake up and smell the cell phones people!

Several phrases come to mind...

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em.

There are many ways of going forward, but only one way of standing still.
-Franklin D. Roosevelt

I am not standing in the way of progress I am just asking progress what it plans to do with everybody else.
-Wray Smith

Please take a moment to read this. And if you really want, why not gift a copy of the book for me. i promise to lend it to others when i'm finished reading it.

Here's the site I originally read it on. It has a little intro and write up. The link above is the original source that was sourced by the site I read it on. Both are good. Why not visit them both?


Saturday, December 19, 2009

A to Z: More than a letter a day for the holidays

The Mathematics Alphabet
arc
binomial
constant
determinant
ellipsoid
fraction
geometry
heptagon
integral
Jacobian
kinematics
logarithm
matrix
numbers
octagon
polyhedron
quotient
ratio
sphere
trigonometry
union
variables
width
x-axis
yard
zero

Friday, December 18, 2009

November Numeracy Committee Meeting Minutes

Six Nations District Numeracy Committee Meeting Minutes

Thursday, November 19th, 2009

JC Hill (2:30 – 4:00)

Agenda Items

Present: Janis Thomas, Alice Anderson, Sandy Hill, Joe Restoule General

Regrets: Luanne Martin

Absent: Carrie Froman, Judy McNaughton


Review minutes from last meeting

Comment was made to receive the minutes in a more timely fashion. Attention will be made to this in for future meetings.

Joe followed up on several items from the minutes. He spoke about our ability to access grade 9 EQAO data. There are several factors prohibiting this, namely student “mydent” numbers that are used to identify and track students. Previous access to the data that was referred to at October’s meeting was actually an initiative of a single individual that took it upon themselves to organize and compile data. It was time extensive and onerous. GEDSB consultants indicated that EQAO data is usually used to move forward upon and that grade 9 data isn’t utilized by grade seven and eight teachers in a retrospective fashion.

The 3 Year District Numeracy Plan was revised and distributed. Joe followed up on the number of strands that GEDSB is expected to report on. Joe’s contact said that most schools used the Ministry direction of reporting on every strand at least twice; some schools report on Number Sense and Numeration each term. There is no formal ruling or practice. There is some piloting in the province of a new report card which may affect how Mathematics reporting is done in the future. Once more information is learned, it will be shared with the committee.

SEED Proposal for Math Assessment Tools

A proposal that was written and presented to Imperial Oil for Math Assessment tools was shared. The proposal was approved and will provide each school with a complete set (one for each grade) of Pearson’s Numeracy Nets, and Nelson’s ONAP (Ontario Numeracy Assessment Program), as well as a CD-ROM of the 26 volumes of The Super Source for K-8.

Professional development will be arranged at a future date, either through the companies themselves, by the District Numeracy teacher, or both.

There was a question of whether this proposal should have included or been used to purchase manipulatives. It was discussed by the committee that most schools/classrooms were well stocked with manipulatives from previous orders and school initiatives. It was raised that some classrooms may still be lacking in this regard.

Joe to construct a manipulative/resource checklist and visit all schools to ensure that all classrooms are properly stocked with necessary items/materials.

CAT/Insight Testing Opportunity

Committee reviewed their respective school’s interest in taking advantage of the free CAT/Insight testing offered by CTC (Canadian Test Centre). Samples of the test were given out for all schools at the November PAC meeting.

ECG has several teachers expressing interest in participating for the spring session.

Other schools had either not discussed this with their staff or were not in attendance to express their interest.

Joe to follow up with the principals to confirm their inclusion in the testing.

Math contest (Caribou)

Contestant results from the grade 5 and 6 Caribou contest in October were shared. See Numeracy blog for full results. Students who participated were excited and actively engaged in the test and eager to hear their results. Much enthusiasm was expressed by the students.

It was noted that the committee would attempt to increase participation from the schools. OMSK has an entire class registered for the January contest. Future dates can be found on the Numeracy blog.

ILT Literacy/Math Night on November 26th

Janis spoke about the activity she is doing for the upcoming Literacy and Math Night on November 26th at ILT. Joe shared his activity as well. It will be from 6pm to 7pm.

ECOO Conference

Joe shared a number of resources received at the ECOO conference. Each school received a free 30 day trial of Brain Pop to use in the schools. Math software was shared and demonstrated. Other on-line resources were explored by the committee. Many of these titles and licenses are made available to provincial schools through the Ministry of Education and OSAPAC.

Joe to follow up on the state of our ability to license and/or receive these resources. Leslie White-Eye and Dan Dunnigan were two names that were suggested for further information. Mike Hickey was working on this in his role as District Technology teacher.

The Grade 7-9 continuum put out by Grand Erie: follow up

Joe spoke about the Math Connections poster and explained the idea and concept behind it from his conversation with GEDSB consultants. He also shared that GEDSB is beginning to look at grades 7 to 10 as an entire block in much of their future planning.

Report Card Inserts

Two Ministry documents are on order to be sent home with the report cards on December 4th. One is from 2003, the other from 2007. The former is more primary focused and the latter is more junior centered. It was decided by the committee that sending home a copy of each document to every student wouldn’t hurt.

Review 3 Year Plan in Final Draft Form

Some schools had received a copy of the updated Three Year Numeracy District Plan that was given out at the PAC meeting. Other schools had yet to see it or were not in attendance to confirm having received the newest version.

Feedback from each school’s staff members is expected for future review and reflection on the three year plan.

Joe indicated that he would like to have a fully electronic version completed which would mean altering the appendices. He will follow up on this.

Numeracy Committee Goals for 2009-2010

The committee was to set some goals and/or identify the items in the plan that we can focus on for the 2009-2010 school year.

As the meeting was poorly attended, it was determined to suspend this agenda item until greater representation is present.

It was discussed that we are already advancing and enacting upon several of the goals in the three year plan and should continue to do so.

Ready, Set, Green!

A new ministry document on environmental education was shared. The recommendation was made to order one for every teacher in the district. Joe agreed to do this.

Almost Solstice

Today there are two suggested Brain Pop lessons!! One is Winter to correspond with the quickly approaching first official day of Winter. The other is Solstice and Equinox, in recognition of the upcoming Winter Solstice on the 21st.

Click on the links to take you to the Brain Pop site. You may have to login, using the free 30 day account trial that your numeracy rep provided for you. If you forgot to sign up, you can use the login of another teacher in your school that did sign up.

Again, not exactly math related, but the more you use Brain Pop, the more you'll come to discover the advantages of the program. And, as those at Brain Pop say, "The more you know, the more you know."

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Wright Beethoven

Today there are two suggested Brain Pop lessons!! One is Flight to correspond with today being Wright Brothers' Day. The other is Ludwig Van Beethoven, in recognition of his birthday in 1770.

Click on the links to take you to the Brain Pop site. You may have to login, using the free 30 day account trial that your numeracy rep provided for you. If you forgot to sign up, you can use the login of another teacher in your school that did sign up.

Again, not exactly math related, but the more you use Brain Pop, the more you'll come to discover the advantages of the program. And, as those at Brain Pop say, "The more you know, the more you know."

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

EQAO Strategies

Fresh off the EQAO e-mail newsletter.

How YOU can fix your scores too!!!

Follow the link.

Math 3 Under the Sea

Here's an interesting and fun site for the early middle grades and struggling later grades. It is well animated, Canadian, and quick and easy to learn. Once entered into the pool (fish, pool, get it? ha, ha, ha), students can return with their unique screen name and unlock more activities.

It did freeze up a few times on me, but i don't know if it was just my multi-tasking and window hopping or my internet connection.

Give it a whirl! Dive in! (sea, dive, get it? ok, I'll stick to my day job).

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Sticks and Stones Might Break My Bones but at least I'll have learned something!



I came across this Native American inspired data management lesson/game whilst looking for exemplary lessons. If you haven't utilized the NCTM Illuminations website yet, what are you waiting for??

There are SO many great lessons at your fingertips that can be modified or presented as is for your classroom. Search by grade and strand and away you go. Most lessons are actually designed to combine math strands, so not only does it cut down on your lesson planning, it also trims time on your curriculum coverage.

Take a look by clicking on the link "Illuminations" on the side bar. The best thing about these lessons are their adherence to the type of problem solving, open investigation learning that we need our students to be doing in the modern math class.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Cold Enough For You?

Today's suggested Brain Pop lesson is South Pole to correspond with today's anniversary of the first expedition to reach the South Pole in 1911.

Click on the link to take you to the Brain Pop site. You may have to login, using the free 30 day account trial that your numeracy rep provided for you. If you forgot to sign up, you can use the login of another teacher in your school that did sign up.

Again, not exactly math related, but the more you use Brain Pop, the more you'll come to discover the advantages of the program. And, as those at Brain Pop say, "The more you know, the more you know."

Friday, December 11, 2009

12 Days of Problem Solving

Whilst visiting ECG teachers yesterday, the Amazing Alice Anderson shared a lesson with me that she and Mrs. Bomberry did with their grade ones and twos. It is everything a model problem solving lesson should be: open to student exploration, various methods for solving, engaging and connected to other classroom content, etc.

Mrs. Anderson sang the 12 Days of Christmas with the students. i believe they also read a book about the traditional Christmas song. The students were then asked to figure out, just how many gifts does the person receive in the song, exactly?

Students were left to their own devices, chart paper and markers, to figure out how they were going to solve this question. Mrs. Anderson shared some of the attempts with me, which ranged from writing a number sentence, to creating a graphic or pictorial image of the songs' gifts, to the construction of a list, table or graph. Others were drawing and grouping pictures of the gifts from the song.

These types of activities allow the students to use mathematical processes to solve a problem. It does not dictate exactly which method they need to use. By doing this, the students reveal plenty of interesting data concerning their abilities to understand and apply the knowledge they currently possess in math. It gives the teacher an opportunity to see what their students truly know about certain concepts and mathematical application or skills.

Bravo, Alice and Beth for tying in music, language and the holiday with a mathematical problem solving situation!! One quote from Mrs. Anderson that resonates with me is when she said, "There wasn't a single kid saying, 'I don't want to do this,' or 'I don't know how to do this.' They were all trying their best to figure out the answer.

Afterwards, the groups can share their process and enlighten the rest of the class with the various ways one can approach a problem using mathematical processes.

Consider this a gift from Mrs. Anderson and Mrs. Bomberry. Try it out this last week before Christmas Break. It can be easily adapted to suit older grades (have them come up with an algebraic formula perhaps?) or other examples of compounded/growing patterns. It also lends itself to various strands.

Winter Holidays


Today's suggested Brain Pop lesson is Winter Holidays to correspond with today's start to Hannukah. The video explores various winter celebrations around the world.

Click on the link to take you to the Brain Pop site. You may have to login, using the free 30 day account trial that your numeracy rep provided for you. If you forgot to sign up, you can use the login of another teacher in your school that did sign up.

Again, not exactly math related, but the more you use Brain Pop, the more you'll come to discover the advantages of the program. And, as those at Brain Pop say, "The more you know, the more you know."

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Prize for Prizes

Today's suggested Brain Pop lesson is Nobel Prizes to correspond with today's date to traditionally announce and give Nobel Prizes.

Click on the link to take you to the Brain Pop site. You may have to login, using the free 30 day account trial that your numeracy rep provided for you. If you forgot to sign up, you can use the login of another teacher in your school that did sign up.

Again, not exactly math related, but the more you use Brain Pop, the more you'll come to discover the advantages of the program. And, as those at Brain Pop say, "The more you know, the more you know."

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Important Math Survey for Educators!!!

Dear Fellow Math Educators;

The Ontario Mathematics Coordinators' Association, The Ontario Association for

Mathematics Education, and The Fields Institute have banded together to give math

educators in the province of Ontario a pro-active voice in the curriculum reform

process. We are using surveys to gather input from Ontario Math Educators. This is

the third of a series of invitations to participate. Please forward this survey to

all interested math contacts you have. Especially send this to primary, junior,

intermediate and senior teachers that you work in mathematics with as their feedback

is critical.

Just click on the link below to access the survey.

Yours in Mathematical fun,

Jacqueline Hill

OMCA/OAME/FieldsCurriculum Steering Committee Contact

Programs Facilitator, K-12 Mathematics DDSB

OAME Past President

OMCA President

Phone: 905-666-6391

Monday, December 7, 2009

Brain Pop Pearl Harbour

Today's suggested Brain Pop lessons is World War II to correspond with today's anniversary of Pearl Harbour.

Click on the link to take you to the Brain Pop site. You may have to login, using the free 30 day account trial that your numeracy rep provided for you. If you forgot to sign up, you can use the login of another teacher in your school that did sign up.

Again, not exactly math related, but the more you use Brain Pop, the more you'll come to discover the advantages of the program. And, as those at Brain Pop say, "The more you know, the more you know."

Friday, December 4, 2009

Tangram Stories

i can't seem to visit Mr. Freeman's room without walking away with some new, interesting, invigorating teaching tactic or device. Today he shared this tangram site with me, which i am now sharing with you.

He tells me the students were impressed, fascinated and requested to view the site several times over again.

He then had students tell their own stories using tangrams. The link between math and literacy is phenomenal.


For examples of Tangram stories, visit here.

For more Tangram activities, visit here.

For a list of Tangram links, visit here.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Brain Pop Lesson suggestion

Today's suggested Brain Pop lessons are Harriet Tubman and Slavery, two videos that correspond with yesterday's International Day for the Abolition of Slavery.

Click on the links to take you to the Brain Pop sites. The Harriet Tubman lesson is from Brain Pop Jr., and Slavery is from the Brain Pop site. Choose according to your class' age appropriateness.

You may have to login, using the free 30 day account trial that your numeracy rep provided for you. If you forgot to sign up, you can use the login of another teacher in your school that did sign up.

Again, not exactly math related, but the more you use Brain Pop, the more you'll come to discover the advantages of the program. And, as those at Brain Pop say, "The more you know, the more you know."

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Schools plan curriculum overhaul - Parentcentral.ca

Schools plan curriculum overhaul - Parentcentral.ca

This is an interesting article from today's Toronto Star.

Time to wake up and smell the big ideas, people!!!

Time to move education into the 21st century, people!!!

You're either with us OR against us!!!