A blog about teaching and learning in a maths classroom.

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Frequency Distribution Table

Sunday, 25 September 2011 ·

On MathsStarters, I have added a Frequency Distribution Table tool. The tool lets you have 3 to 10 scores, you tally as you go and the frequency and total are calculated.

You could use this on a projector/IWB (the buttons for incrementing the tally are sized for an IWB). Or, students could use this to record data on their own laptop as they collect it – paperless!

Term 3 2010 SDD

Monday, 19 July 2010 ·

Each year for the Term 3 SDD (Staff Development Day), the four schools (three 7-10 and one 11-12) in the collegiate I work in get together for a combined program.

Time - Self-checking Excel Resource

Friday, 11 June 2010 ·

This is a resource for skills in working with time.

Investigating Scientific Notation

Wednesday, 26 May 2010 ·

I’ve been trying to increase my use of the laptops with Year 9.

Teaching Year 10 with Laptops

Sunday, 07 February 2010 ·

In 2009, Year 9 got their DER netbooks and now they are in Year 10. This year’s Year 9 does not have their netbooks yet, and so this gives teachers a little time to get their heads around the inclusion of netbooks into the classroom. This year, I’m teaching a 5.2 pathway Year 10 class (and a Year 9 5.2 class).

Laptop Wraps

Saturday, 30 January 2010 ·

For NSW DET teachers, I’m sure you know of TaLe, and hopefully have seen some of the resources for the DER that have been published there. One category of resources has been called Laptop Wraps (they are also available publicly).

Chocolate Bar Graphs

Friday, 01 January 2010 ·

Some chocolate discussion starters for looking at bar graphs: a series of chocolate bar graphs.

Pie Graphs on Netbooks

Thursday, 03 December 2009 ·

Despite every Year 9 student having a laptop for a few weeks, the topics we’ve been covering haven’t lent themselves to full laptop lessons. To end the term, though, we’re reviewing graphs.

Drawing in Excel

Sunday, 29 November 2009 ·

A lesson for Year 9 students with DER laptops, or anyone really.

Evidence of doing anything

Tuesday, 24 November 2009 ·

I think that each student using a netbook/laptop in your class presents some slightly different issues in Maths.

Making a matching activity

Thursday, 12 November 2009 ·

As I mentioned, the DER roll-out hit my classroom as we were in the midst of Algebra. Due to a tight program and exams shortly, I had to stick with a couple of topics which don’t really allow for “play” on the laptops as much as I would have liked.

A lot of the Algebra taught at the Stage 4 level is technique, and so matching activities work particularly well to practise and review skills.

Here’s a review of some of the ways I’ve found to make matching activities for use on the laptops.

Resize to Netbook Size

Saturday, 07 November 2009 ·

Not really maths related, but handy if you’re looking at a web-site that will be used on a Netbook.

Handling the Inappropriate

Saturday, 24 October 2009 ·

Week 1 is over, and I need to reflect on what happen when I introduced laptops into my classroom.

Computer Aided Homework

Sunday, 18 October 2009 ·

A Digital Education Revolution (DER) laptop in the hands of all Year 9 students changes everything… or does it?

DERing with Year 9

Wednesday, 14 October 2009 ·


Year 9 got their DER netbooks just before the end of Term 3. The first week of Term 4 will be the first time they have them in class, so I wanted to start term with some introductory activities, with a Maths focus.

This post is a work in progress, check back for updates.

20 Oct 2009: Go to update

NSWDER Tutorials

Wednesday, 23 September 2009 ·

Brad Bennett, a student at a NSW DET Public High School, has made a site called DERNSW TutorialsTutorials for students and teachers using NSWDER laptops.

Brisbane Broncos Number Plane Logo

Sunday, 20 September 2009 ·

Last year, I posted the Melbourne Storm Number Plane Logo – and today, exactly one year later, purely by coincidence, I’ve made a Brisbane Broncos Number Place activity.

World’s Fastest Clapper

Saturday, 01 August 2009 ·

Here’s a quirky little activity that uses the DER laptops.

Student Expectations with Laptops

Monday, 27 July 2009 ·

As a PBL school, we have lots of “Student Expectations” at our school for nearly all aspects of an ordinary day (entering the classroom, in the playground, walking through a corridor – we have narrow corridors, formal assembly). In a couple of weeks, there will be another aspect of the “ordinary day” – laptops. So, I’ve drafted some student expectations for the technology committee at my school to discuss.

Asking Yr 9 about laptops

Thursday, 23 July 2009 ·

As part of the last lesson with my Year 9 class in Term 2, I asked them to write me an email expressing their thoughts about getting their own laptop in Term 3.

Using GeoGebra

Wednesday, 22 July 2009 ·

This article is not a “how-to” but rather some thinking about using GeoGebra (a discussion starter maybe).

Curriculum Support for DER

Monday, 20 July 2009 ·

For NSW DET teachers, the Curriculum Support web-site has been updated with resources for the DER, i.e. the laptops being rolled out to Year 9 students.

10 Things Teachers Should Know Before 1:1

Friday, 17 July 2009 ·

A quick read… some thoughts on 1:1 Computing from the “Free Technology for Teachers” blog: 10 Things Teachers Should Know Before 1:1.

Updated: Another new article: Ready for 1:1? Check this list before you answer from Darcy Moore a DP at Dapto H.S.

Time to learn

Sunday, 05 July 2009 ·

Teacher’s throughout NSW DET schools are starting to receive their DER netbooks.

Google SketchUp

Thursday, 02 July 2009 ·

Google Sketchup is one of the applications bundled on the DER netbooks being rolled out into NSW Public High Schools in Term 3. But as it’s free, you can download it now for Windows XP/Vista & Mac OS X.

Laptop rollout

Saturday, 20 June 2009 ·

I recently contributed some comments to the executive at my school about the DET roll-out expected to be happening soon. A slightly editted version is below. I’m really not sure where the executive are at with this roll-out, I haven’t heard much except from the computer coordinator – it’s a shame, or more accurately, it makes me nervous, because there is the potential for a lot of problems to arise from this roll-out if we’re not prepared. I’m republishing my comments because they might help you in engaging with your school about planning and preparation.

Maths L4L Wiki

Thursday, 04 June 2009 ·

If you missed it in the comments to an earlier post. There are two new wikis you might want to keep an eye on as a NSW DET teacher (or any Maths teacher really).

L4L Software Specs

Thursday, 04 June 2009 ·

The NSW DET will shortly equip Year 9 students with a Lenovo S10e netbook as part of a program called “Laptops for Learning” (L4L). To me, if we are going to do this – then it’s time to include some good software on these machines and help out schools who cannot afford some of the more exciting applications.

Preparing for Laptops 4 Learning

Sunday, 10 May 2009 ·

Term 3 will see the roll-out of netbooks to Year 9 at my school (some photos of the Lenovo S10e).

I’ve been thinking about how to prepare for this roll-out in my own teaching.

A digital education revolution?

Wednesday, 01 April 2009 ·

I have watched with interest the Digital Education Revolution proposed by the Australia Government. Issues of cost seem to have been resolved and I’ve resigned myself to the fact that the NSW DET is pushing a one laptop fits all model (although I think it’s flawed). I’ve read the tender for the “DET Learning Device” and have even dissected it with my computing class. But today, 1st April – fitting really – a significant step to realisation has been taken with the announcement of the hardware and software to be supplied.

Free of technical hassles

Monday, 09 February 2009 ·

In a previous post I talked about the Digital Education Revolution – the roll-out of student laptops. There will probably be quite a few posts on that topic this year.

Looking to 2009

Sunday, 01 February 2009 ·

2009 will be my fourth year of teaching. There are a few things happening this year that I want to note now, so I can reflect on their outcomes at the end of the year.

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Simon Job — eleventh year of teaching maths in a public high school in Western Sydney, Australia.
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