Why Technology Can't Fix Education is a Ted Talk that emphasizes the need for teachers and the connection they make with students in the classroom.
Let's Talk About Math...
The why behind my capstone
The main motivation behind my driving question was inspired by my 6th grade student's performance when solving math problems that required their ability to read and use specific math vocabulary correctly. Additionally, my students who are English Language Learners (ELLs) have results from test scores in the ELPAC in the speaking category that are consistently higher than any other score (reading and writing for example). These scores show that (ELLs) are able to translate their understanding of English by speaking at a higher rate than reading or writing.
My hope is that I can lean on and build upon their foundation for speaking in my project. By having them use what they already know, and using technology that makes them feel like they can work at their own pace my goal is to improve their content knowledge and feel supported while having a sense of a personal approach to the content. The ability to use digital tools to support them in making sense of the content through verbal meta-cognition combines all three sections of TPACK.
Background and Need
In classrooms and on state assessments across the country, students are required to explain their thinking and justify their answers in writing. For years, studies have been done to understand how using language and communicating is related to success and understanding math. According to Silbey, talking one's way through a problem, can help students organize and consolidate their math thinking. There is a clear positive relationship between student communication and math understanding.
The overwhelming majority of students can apply strategies learned to solve problems given an equation with an operation presented as a symbol (+, -, ✕, ÷) but their accuracy and level of understanding steeply declines when they are asked to perform the same type of problem given words in a real world situation. Starting with a graphic organizer, like the Frayer Model, clarifying the meaning of the vocabulary words is the first step.
Mastery of mathematical word problems requires higher order thinking, analyzing and explaining not just memorization. Giving students the chance to communicate ideas, give and receive feedback, reflect on their thinking and how they went about to solve a problem and then modify what they know requires a strategic lesson that gives students a way to interact with their knowledge and thinking in a way that is different than the routine direct instructional approach.
Teacher Toolkit: Frayer Model explains the format and characteristics of the layout of the vocabulary organizer that is known a the Frayer Model.
Continue to my references page to see the tools and resources I use in the classroom in my intervention. Follow the link in the picture to my Weebly website and browse my blogs from three semesters of the Innovative Learning program.