Saturday, 01 March 2008 | 0 Comments
There’s a lot said in university lectures, teacher inservices and blogs about how we should be teaching.
This is my 3rd year of teaching, but only my 2nd year of teaching Year 7 (new to high school). I probably didn’t notice as much about these new-comers to secondary school in my 1st year of teaching… I was all a bit overwhelmed. This last couple of days, however, reviewing some work they’ve just completed I’m a little taken aback.
For one thing, many of them have terrible handwriting. So terrible it’s difficult to determine numbers.
Many still struggle with basic operations, despite the efforts of numeracy programs in primary schools.
Many just don’t know their timestables.
As a secondary school teacher, I’m supposed to jump into the next stage of the syllabus, but many of these students haven’t really accomplished the previous 1 or 2 stages.
So, I get frustrated when I read about all the nifty new cooperative, collaborative, constructive methods I should be using with these students as from what I’ve seen, these methods pre-suppose some level of knowledge from which the student can build — what if they don’t have that knowledge?
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Simon Job — eleventh year of teaching maths in a public high school in Western Sydney, Australia.
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