How are you incorporating technology into your maths teaching?
Technology has a massive impact on our day-to-day lives, and it is important that students are comfortable with using it. These appliances and applications can help teachers be more efficient and productive. There is a plethora of technological resources available to teachers, a lot of which are free!
At the start of my training year, I was hesitant to include a lot of technology within my teaching, purely due to my own lack of knowledge about it.
Gradually, I have built a bank of “go-to” technologies:
Before even starting in schools, our training provider introduced us to visualisers and gave each trainee their own. These devices are truly amazing. I’ve found them most helpful when giving whole class feedback for a test or a homework assignment as not only do the students get live feedback, but you can also write more comfortably than on the board. The only drawback to using visualisers is that you are often tucked behind your desk and therefore less able to observe the class.
Recently, I was introduced to a free website called Mathigon. I must admit I haven’t fully explored all the resources on there, but in addition to lesson plans, activities, and courses, the PolyPad section provides tools such as algebra tiles, scales, and prime factor circles that are manipulative. I highly recommend having a play on this website. You can also set up a free teacher account and create your own classes so that students can be involved in the work.
Although the use of PowerPoint is sometimes overlooked in the teaching of mathematics, there is an ease to displaying questions on a whiteboard rather than printing 30 sheets. This is in addition to the environmental impact that projecting questions has as opposed to printing reams of worksheets for every lesson. PowerPoint has become one of the first applications that I go to when planning a lesson.
There is a vast range of graphical calculators available on the internet. Notable applications of these include Geogebra, Autograph and Desmos. Although I use Desmos regularly in lessons to quickly model graphs for students, I was recently introduced to extra resources that Desmos supply. You can create your own interactive lessons which include polls, interactive questions, free starter materials, and interactive games. These can be incredibly useful during remote learning as well as during ordinary lessons or lessons in computer suites.
Technology can be used as a hook to start a lesson, a fun, interactive way to assess learning (such as the use of Plickers), or to model solutions and representations to mathematical problems. Including technology in our teaching enriches these lessons.
By Selena Hofmann
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