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Week 12 Networking options (April 2 - 8)

You can network at live events or asynchronous communication platforms. Choose one of the following options this week, and write a reflection about your participation in this task's comments. 

New suggestions:
You can continue networking in the familiar communities:

Task Discussion

  • Keisha   May 1, 2012, 6:40 p.m.

    For this task I visited Let’s Play Math again. I really enjoy this Facebook page. I saw a link that someone posted about math calendars. This sparked my curiosity and I clicked on the link to learn more about it. What I found was amazing. You make a calendar filled with equations which answer is the day of the month. This is a fantastic activity to do with students in math class. They use their imagination and prior knowledge to come up with equations. They can be easy or challenging. It’s a great way to be creative and add in shapes or patterns. I love this activity!


    Let's Play Math · 536 like this
    April 3 at 12:08pm ·
  • Carolyn   April 16, 2012, 3:35 p.m.

    As I continue to search through the Let's Play Math Facebook page I saw that the 49 blog carnival is coming up and clicked on a link that sent me to a blog about the number 49, because if you didn't know April is National Mathematics Awareness Month. The post went into how the number 49 is very unique in that it is the first square where the digits are also square and that 4 x 9 +4+9=49. Both of these facts I did not know and found interesting. The rest of the blog was focused on different math activities that focused on math. One that I found really interesting was an activity involving angles. It used an actual swing and had a protractor on the side of swing. It was a HUGE protractor so that kids could see. Although this idea would require money and space I think it is a great visual for kids that struggle with angles. Here is the link

  • Laura Haeberle   April 15, 2012, 11:09 p.m.

    For this week, I went back to the Living Math Forum for inspiration. It's hard to use the forum at times, because many of the questions and comments are related to homeschooling and different practice books and programs to use. I'm unfamiliar with most of these, and can't offer much insight. That's why I was so excited to see a post on multiplication charts. One person posted that their child's practice book had a multiplication chart to fill in at the beginning. Here's the post:

    I commented on a bit of a side note on my feelings about multiplication charts. I have mixed feelings since I recognize how helpful the charts are with children just learning. And I agree with the original post that it's a great idea to have a fill-in chart. However, sometimes kids rely too much on these and other supplements. Sometimes, kids aren't forced to learn basic multiplication because they can just use the charts. I think that, even though it's great to have these resources, there has to be a time when the children just need to learn enough to get through harder math problems.

    My other form of networking today stemmed off a picture I saw on Bon's "Math is Not a Four Letter Word." Someone posted a picture of a demolished house, with the caption "Division by Zero."

    I posted, though I'm not sure if it showed, about how interesting this was. Clearly, the picture is meant as a joke, but I think we keep "dividing by zero" as a grand secret from children. This goes against the curious nature of children! Why can't we divide by zero? Why can't we give an answer? Teachers need to fuel that desire, encouraging their students to ask those bold math questions. I feel like it's one of those standard math rules, and we can base lessons around that. Perhaps teachers could plan a lesson where each child draws or creates a picture of what they think would happen if one divided by zero. It would be a fun, interactive way to think creatively about math!

  • SandyG   April 4, 2012, 8:58 p.m.

    For the past few weeks I have “attended” Mathchat on Twitter, but this week I decided to do something different.  I listed to Howard Rheingold’s Netsmart: How to Thrive Online. This talk was a combination sales pitch for his new book as well as the concepts in the book. 

    There was some talk about privacy and the internet that I found very interesting as this is an area that concerns me very much.  Rheingold said that in many ways we have already lost this battle.  He said that social media has made the rules without asking us and continue to change them the same way.  He said there are threats to our privacy, and no one was concerned about privacy practices until it was too late.  He said the reality is that “someone can always get to you”.  That’s a bit unsettling to me!

    Rheingold discusses his 5 Fundamental Literacies which is what his new book is about.  The 5 literacies regarding technology are:

    • Infotention= When we learn to make decisions such as whether to pay attention or “surf”.
    • Critical Consumption=   Learning how to evaluate online materials. Rheingold stated that because the ability to search came about so quickly, these skills have not been taught as fully as they need to be. I personally agree with this.  It’s difficult to get students to really understand that there is a difference between a peer reviewed journal article and a Wikipedia entry.
    • Participation= Important to recognize the connection between participation and power, and the importance to participate.  There are many ways to participate including blogs, wikis, and various platforms.
    • Collaboration = Rheingold feels that we all have to network and post.  He said that open resource tools are important, and it’s a form of collaboration that must grow. 
    • Network awareness=  This was described as connecting small pieces of knowledge to form a larger concept. 


    The most interesting of these literacies for me was the Infotention.  He showed an example of the “best” student in his class whom he filmed from behind without the class knowing.  We saw that the student spent time viewing Rheingold’s graphic, that despite being shown at the front of the class, he preferred to view on his own screen.  The student then opened a new browser window and went to Rheingold’s blog.  He went back to the graphics and finally ended up checking his email.  The example wasn’t used to say that the student wasn’t paying attention, but that his Infotention was divided.  I see this all of the time.  Students listen to Pandora as they are completing independent work, or surfing different sites while a teacher is giving a demonstration.  I think students are better able to multitask and split their attention much better today.  Does anyone else find this to be true?

  • Maria Droujkova   April 6, 2012, 8:14 a.m.
    In Reply To:   SandyG   April 4, 2012, 8:58 p.m.

    Glad you got to meet Rheingold, Sandra. He's one of the network nodes for open online education in general. Your notes were helpful to me, since I could not attend this session.

    Infotention is interesting for me too, mainly because it parallels time and task management required for mathematical problem solving. Computer-based mathematics changed problem-solving significantly. For example, while using GeoGebra, you have to attend to tool hints and observe emergent events on the screen - both may give you key clues to your problem. When you problem-solve by yourself on paper, these events simply don't occur.