Thursday, December 4, 2008

Tech Stuff I'm Learning from You

It's the last day of our Technology in Education class at University of Washington - Bothell. We're all sharing our technology portfolios. This is what I've learned from you:

  • In Google maps, you can embed video (how???) and audio (with widget). A teacher created a map in the Google Earth view around which students had to tell a story. Cool.
  • How do you invite parents/students to pbwiki? Kids don't need an email address (sign up as a class); do a group invite for parents (from email distribution list).
  • Slide show: Can make in and
  • Google clock for different time zones is a great idea for a blog/website if partnering with a school in another time zone.
  • Jing for taking a video of a computer screen.
  • for mindmapping.
  • Nick's portfolio for math tools: gapminder, graphjam?, iGoogle gadget motion chart, for speakers.
  • Pamela for recording a Skype video conference (but only one side of the conversation).
  • Sustainable Building and Design discussion group on Delicious.
  • for photo/text/music only digital story.
  • Furl for putting notes up on a wiki.
  • Google notebook for storing info that you searched.
Thank you!

Math Games and Why Math is Like Sex...

Hai, I'm with you about your post on math games. My experience is that many kids do like math games. Some of my least "mathy" kids will spot the game set behind my desk and say, "Ohh, I love that game." I know the sixth grade math teacher at my school has tried game days especially on Fridays when the energy for "regular" math isn't there. I haven't tried it myself, but your post is encouraging me to.

I have talked with my students about game theory being a branch of mathematics and even played a couple of strategy games with them and showed them how math can help you win. They did enjoy that. If you wanted to step up the rigor, you could even have them write about their strategy or design a game and a strategy for winning.

I'm also reminded of a Richard Feynman quote (posted on "Why I Love Mathematics" on about the joy of doing physics. You could sub in math for physics, and the quote still works: "Physics is like sex: sure, it may give some practical results, but that's not why we do it." Oh, if only my students felt that way...