Life Equations

Life Equations.

Dan Meyer has a knack for coming up with innovative ways to engage students in math. Especially, his creative use of video footage in lesson plans. What I would like to see is students using the cameras to create, share, and solve problems with one another. That would be even more exciting!

Read this article about Dan Meyer and watch the embedded video!

See more of Dan Meyer’s ideas in this TED Talks. I couldn’t agree more with his statement that as educators, many of us our selling a product to a market that is not interested, but forced by law to buy it. I wrote about this very same thing in a writing assignment for another class. I believe we must strategically market educational reform if we expect students, teachers, administrators, parents, and government officials to buy into it. We are not just selling the idea of education to unmotivated students, it has become part of our cultural currency.

  1. Kathy
    May 2, 2011 at 6:48 pm

    I’ve seen this video with Dan Meyer before and his approach seems so simple! Can it really be that easy? My answer: YES! It reminds me of this professional development program at the City College Workshop Center in New York (there’s a profile on it in Loucks-Horsely et al’s Designing Professional Development for Teachers of Science and Mathematics Education, 3rd ed, 2010). The program focuses on elementary school teachers and the way in which they teach science to young children. Basically, they show teachers ways to use natural phenomenon to explain scientific concepts/foster inquiry/teach kids how to ask questions, make observations, collect data, and then come up with logical conclusions (kind of like science is everywhere and can be accessed by all). An example “experiment” would be to see what happens to an apple when it is left out in different temperature environments…

    This type of real-world emphasis is what I see in Dan Meyer’s work. Students can easily see the connection between math (or science) and their everyday lives (and as he noted, the remedial level kids he worked with were not initially interested in the theoretical, so he had to find a hook to reel them in).

    The only sad part of all this is that Dan Meyer is no longer in the classroom. The article states he is pursuing a PhD in curriculum design…and another good teacher bites the dust!

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