Hello everyone! My name is Caley and I graduated from SUNY Cortland with a BS in Adolescence Education: Mathematics. I have been teaching high school math in Ossining, NY ever since and am in love with the profession! I have had the pleasure of working with two different coteachers so am always looking for ways to implement effective strategies as a team, while also meeting the needs of our many students with IEPs. Working in a school with over a 60% Hispanic population has also encouraged me to devise ways of differentiating lessons or modifying my teaching to help my ELL students. I just began pursuing my Graduate Degree in Curriculum Development and Instructional Technology (CDIT) at University of Albany, and am very excited to continue furthering my education!
My Topic and Purpose
Do you think math is boring? Does the monotonous task of writing and solving questions over and over on paper make you yawn? It's time to spice up your idea of how math instruction can be executed in a classroom! Today, there are many tools that exist in the world that were not there many years ago. As the times change, it is important for educators to do the same. Many schools provide their teachers with some type of technology, whether it be SMART Boards, Chromebooks, personal laptops for students, etc. Using these tools, this course will introduce new programs that can educate students in a more engaging and updated fashion. There's an incredible toolbox available on the internet with programs such as Kahoot!, Quizlet, PearDeck, DeltaMath, Desmos, and Plickers that provide teachers with a different way to instruct and assess students. These online programs may be molded to the needs of the class, differentiated between students, and assessed by the teacher. It is also possible with a lot of these programs for the teacher to view and compare student answers, then identifying common misconceptions and addressing them as a class. This course will teach educators how to implement these tools in their own classrooms so that they may engage their learners and promote intellectual growth.
By the end of this course, learners will be able to...
- Identify online programs that may be implemented into mathematics classrooms
- Compare/contrast these online programs
- Argue which online programs are most beneficial for students
- Create an online game/activity using one of these programs
- Complete an online questionnaire testing their knowledge about each of the discussed programs
1. Instructional problem
Nowadays, many schools provide teachers with technological resources and it has become an expectation for teachers to use these resources. Some of them may not have been properly trained, or may be struggling to find programs that fully engage and assess their students.
2. The nature of what is to be learned
Learners will be introduced to specific game or activity-based websites that they may incorporate into their own classrooms. They will practice using these websites and will be able to compare/contrast the pros and cons of each.
3. About the Learners
Learners in this course will include educators across disciplines who are interested in incorporating math games into their classrooms. If the educator does not teach any math, they may modify the course content to meet their specific needs.
4. Instructional Content
This mini-course will consist of about three units. The variety of online tools will be separated into these units, organized by website purpose and possible uses in the classroom. Each unit will contain visuals, video tutorials, and hands-on activities that allow the learner to gain experience with these resources. There will be assessments and surveys throughout the course, with a final summary and assessment at the end.
5. Explore instructional problem/solution
There are so many free resources available on the Internet. Unfortunately, many educators are unaware of a lot of these resources or choose not to use them. Math classes become monotonous and there is not an element of creativity or differentiation. When teachers incorporate online math games into their classrooms, it increases the student engagement level and reduces the negative stigma around the subject. Teachers can also use these online tools to differentiate between students, or be provided with a detailed assessment.
6. Generate Goals
The goals of this course are for educators to not only become aware of the online resources available to them, but also to become familiar with these resources and feel comfortable using them in their own classrooms. Educators also will learn about ways they may assess their students using these online games and activities.
Analysis of the Learner and Context
Participants in this course will include educators across a variety of disciplines. These will be educators who have technological resources available in their schools and wish to learn about creative and effective ways of using this technology. Some may already have experience using some of these tools and wish to further develop their understanding, while others may be new to this online experience and need to start from scratch. While this course is geared primarily toward math teachers, most of the games may be modified to be incorporated in any type of classroom.
- After watching a video tutorial on creating an online game, educators will create their own content-specific game.
- Given information on six different online tools, educators will write a one paragraph description comparing and contrasting the resources.
- After each of the three units, educators will complete a ten question survey assessing their understanding of the online games.
Since this mini-course teaches educators about how to use online resources, most of the objectives revolve around viewing technological resources as surveys and as foundations for creating an example assignment. Each unit works its way from being fully whole-class with a game design, to fully independent and quiet work. Learners will read steps on how to create assignments from each of the four resources, will watch tutorial videos, and will assess their own learning.
Unit 1: Kahoot!
- Given a video tutorial and steps on how to create and use Kahoot!, educators will complete a six question survey assessing their understanding of the online game at the end of this unit.
Unit 2: Quizizz
- Given a video tutorial and steps on how to create and use Quizizz, educators will complete a nine question survey assessing their understanding of the online game at the end of this unit.
Unit 3: Desmos
- Given a video tutorial and steps on how to create and use Desmos, educators will complete a nine question survey assessing their understanding of the online game at the end of this unit.
Unit 4: DeltaMath
- Given a tutorial link, learners will view a six-minute video on how to use DeltaMath at the end of this unit.
- Given information on four different online tools, educators will write a one paragraph description comparing and contrasting the resources at the end of this unit.
Below is a sequencing of the four learning units and activities that will achieve the defined objectives.
References and Resources
Mayer, Richard E. (2007). Learning and Instruction, Second edition. Merrill Prentice Hall.