Frequently asked questions: Mathematics

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Frequently asked questions: Mathematics Powered By Docstoc
					Frequently asked questions: Mathematics
The DER NSW program website on the DET intranet has a list of FAQs that relate to the
laptop, leaders, parents, security, software, students, teachers, technical support officers
and wireless connectivity. These can be accessed through the DET portal.
The FAQs listed below relate specifically to mathematics classrooms, teachers and students.
What are some of the benefits of using laptops in Mathematics lessons?
The visual, dynamic geometry and graphing capability of GeoGebra and Google SketchUp
can enhance students’ engagement and deep understanding of geometry, algebra and
measurement in comparison to the static page of a worksheet or text book. The laptop also
offers the opportunity to speed up repetitive tasks, particularly graphing of equations;
collaborate and investigate dynamic visual mathematics; and make higher order tasks more
accessible for all students. Access to the World Wide Web will make answering the age old
question students ask, Why do I have to learn this?, easier by showing how mathematics
connects to the real world.
Are the students expected to use the laptops all lesson, every lesson in
No, the laptops are another resource for teaching mathematics. Technology should be used
to enhance the mathematics learning taking place in the classroom. However, students in
the trial schools were very enthusiastic about using their laptops and were keen to engage in
learning mathematics using this new resource. Teachers need to capitalise on this
What can we do with the laptops in maths if students can’t connect to the
All the software available on the laptops may be used without connectivity. Mathematics
resources are being developed which offer suggestions for activities and lessons that require
little or no connectivity.
What software programs will be on the laptops that can be used in
mathematics lessons?
GeoGebra, Google SketchUp 7, Excel, Access, Word, Smart Notebook, MS Excel, MS
OneNote, MS PowerPoint, the whole Adobe suite, Student Response Network, Microsoft
Math 3.0 are only the beginning.

Mathematics FAQs                                                                    Page 1 of 3
What are some short laptop activities that I can use with my students
The following activities could also be used as mathematics faculty professional learning

Strand            Key idea              Activity

Working           Communicating         Mathematics glossary (Microsoft Access database)
                                        Students can keep a personal mathematics glossary of
                                        key mathematical terms and definitions by using the
                                        database file available on the Curriculum Support

Working           Communicating         eMaths book (Microsoft OneNote)
                                        A formatted MS OneNote file is available for students to
                                        manage and record their mathematics laptop learning.
                                        Instructions on how to use the OneNote file as an
                                        eMaths book are included.

Patterns and      Locate ordered        Point on a line – lesson plan (GeoGebra)
algebra           pairs and graph
                                        Students plot a point on the number plane using
                  simple linear
                                        GeoGebra and use guess, check and refine strategies
                                        to discover equations of lines which pass through the
                                        point. Students explain why certain equations pass
                                        through a common point.

Patterns and      Graphing simple       Characteristics of straight lines (Smart Notebook)
algebra           linear equations
                                        This sorting activity encourages students to observe
                                        characteristics and make links between the equation of
                                        a line and the graph of the equation.

Measurement       Find the area of      The tiler (Learning object, NSW DET CK-12, Internet,
                  rectangles            needs connectivity)
                                        A learning object that develops students understanding
                                        of the area concept. Available at

Measurement       Find the area of      Area of triangles series (learning object, The Learning
                  triangles             Federation)
                                        Students explore the relationship between the area of a
                                        rectangle and the area of a triangle. Available for
                                        download from the TaLe website.

Data              Draw, read and        Greedy pig (Smart Notebook)
                  interpret stem-and-
                                        Students play the Greedy pig game, record their scores
                  leaf plots
                                        and construct a stem-and-leaf plot from the class data.

Mathematics FAQs                                                                 Page 2 of 3
Space and      Determine              Prisms – lesson plan (Google SketchUp)
geometry       properties of three-
                                      Students create three-dimensional prisms using Google
                                      SketchUp and investigate faces, vertices and edges.

Number         Determine              Probability (learning object, The Learning Federation)
                                      Students use the Spinners series learning objects to
                                      create, test and use spinners to model probability
                                      experiments. Available for download from the TaLe

Number         Solve simple           Clever shopping (Internet website, needs connectivity)
                                      This series of activities investigates best buy problems
                                      and is available from the Curriculum Support website.

Mathematics FAQs                                                               Page 3 of 3

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