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Week 3 Live meeting! (January 30 - February 5)

Recording of Wednesday meeting

I want everyone to have an opportunity to have a weekly live event! There is no clear winner for the meeting time, as the poll is showing: The meeting task, therefore, will include open online meetings about math happening on a given week around the internet. Attending such meetings helped me a lot professionally, because of learning and networking opportunities they provide. I will schedule our meetings on alternating Mondays and Wednesdays (poll winners).

The live meeting task

  • Choose any meeting from the list below
  • Attend and participate actively
  • Post Comment to this task with the link to your meeting and a brief reflection


January 30 - February 5 live meeting opportunities

Wednesday, February 1

Thursday, February 2

Friday, February 3

Saturday, February 4
You can also find other professional meetings online to attend. In particular, this week there are many fine choices at Connecting Online 12 (CO12) conference, going on almost around the clock Thursday to Saturday: Also, the Future of Education series is always worth checking out:

Video intermission

Nature by numbers

Task Discussion

  • Keisha   May 1, 2012, 1:02 p.m.

    I like the idea of going to students and asking them what questions are on their minds that they want to know. A lot of the questions shown in the live meeting where really impressive for 6-9 years olds to be asking. I would have never thought that a child would want to know ‘why our small eyes can see so big objects’. The map of Calculus as really cool! Just like what Laura said I took Calc in high school and it was pretty difficult at first but this map really explains it well. It allows young kids who want to learn Calc early learn it. I never knew there was a thing as math crochet. I just started crocheting last summer and I really enjoy it. I did some research on it and found this website

    The question that Maria posed about what to do when kids go into wild places with their questions is something I’m kind of afraid of happening in my future classroom. When I’m caught off guard with questions I have no idea how to answer it. Laura made a great point to let the students know that their curiosity is valued and their questions will get answered soon. This will definitely help me in the future if this happens to me.

  • Carolyn   April 22, 2012, 7:47 p.m.

    I just listened to the Math and art meeting and even at the end of the course am intrigued by the connection of math and art and how I was unaware of it until now. I was always aware of such art in math as tesselations and those of MC Escher but never thought about it any other way. I always considered myself a math person and not an art person. Moreover I was good at math and not artistic in anyway all throughout school and always thought the two had no connection. However now that I see there is a connection through sculputures and different art pieces, my theory of being just a mth or just an art person is blown to pieces. 

  • Kathy Cianciola   Feb. 17, 2012, midnight

    Maria, I'm very happy that you posted our activities-to-date.  This is how I realized that I missed the webinar for week three, and it was a good one. I wish I had been online for it.  Many questions were posed and everyone really thought out their answers.  Is mathematics from nature or are we using mathematics and applying it to nature? This was the question that Laura brought up, It reminded me of "Who came first the chicken or the egg?" I believe that nature (God, if you believe as I do) has invented the original mathematics, and we as humans are still trying to explore it, and put it into terms we can deal with on a human level.  Mathematical concepts are so vast, as were some of those questions posed by 6-9 year-olds..."How big is the universe?"  "What was the first butterfly in the world, and how big was it?"  "When did the world begin?"   These are some beautiful questions.  At what point do humans stop asking these questions.  By the time we reach adulthood very few even care about such things anymore...but children still do.  I'm sure our students will have many questions we can't even begin to answer. Last semester I interviewed a biology teacher, and when I asked about her worst experience as a teacher, she explained that when she first sarted out she was terribly afraid that a student would ask her a question she didn't know the answer to.  She also said that she had to learn (exactly as Maria stated) that she could get back to them with the answer.  I think in subjects like math and science this is very often a necessary response.  We are human and don't know al the answers and we never will.  I also liked Laura's idea of simplifying answers so that children will understand.  I have done this with my own, and it works quite well.  I thought I heard Maria ask about art/ math and why we don't usually see math and art combined, but maybe I misunderstood her.  At some points the recording wasn't too clear, so I will answer the question anyway.  I think the reason may be that activities such as drawing and painting were taught in the past as a right-brain, free-flowing activity between the eye and the hand, focusing on aspects such as light and dark, line-quality, and spatial relationships but always very intuitive.  This sort of art would have little need for elements of math, however looking at the art objects pictured on "The Bridges Conference" page, I really can see art and math fusing together to form some beautiful creations.  Great online meeting!     

  • Carolyn Lesser   Feb. 16, 2012, 4:58 p.m.


    I listened to the recording with Maria, Sandy and Laura and found it very interesting. Before this class I never thought of art and math being together. However, a lot of the ideas and links from the meeting were wonderful. I think my favorite link was the fractal tool from illuminations. Like Laura I would have loved having that to learn from as a child. The more interactive things are the more we remember and learn! I also enjoyed seeing the math crochet and quilt patterns, again interactive. It is amazing the things you can do with kids that involve math. I know Maria said that not all kids can do the crochet but it is still cool that some can. I would love to learn this and teach it to students. I wonder if there is some kind of class locally that I could find.

    I also found Ethnomathematics extremely interesting. I have never heard of this term until this class and plan on learning more about it. As the same as art, I never thought of culture and math together. I still don’t quite understand how it works but I plan on researching. I am now looking at math in so many different lights thanks to this class!

  • Maria Droujkova   Feb. 19, 2012, 11:41 a.m.
    In Reply To:   Carolyn Lesser   Feb. 16, 2012, 4:58 p.m.

    When I first discovered the Ethnomathematics community, I was very excited too - "Where has this been all my life?!" 

    Carolyn, have you noticed the phrases "I never thought about it" and "I have never done this" appearing after every task in this class? So many new things in elementary math! I've been at it for a while and I keep finding new things still, almost daily. 

  • SandyG   Feb. 2, 2012, 8:17 p.m.

    I attended the session with Professor D about math and the arts.  It's a topic that I find very interesting because I believe the arts do belong in schools, but I must admit that I never thought much about how they would fit into a math class except for the obvious such as measurement and symmetry.  The sculptures and artwork that she showed was amazing!  As we went through the different websites, I kept thinking that I don't see this in my school's math classrooms.  It will be great to see it someday, though. 

  • Maria Droujkova   Feb. 3, 2012, 8:57 a.m.
    In Reply To:   SandyG   Feb. 2, 2012, 8:17 p.m.

    We will see math art in classrooms if we bring it there. It's as easy as printing something out from the web and taping it to the wall. Or starting the day with a beautiful short video. 

    Between the Folds - artistic and mathematical origami

  • SandyG   Feb. 3, 2012, 10:07 a.m.
    In Reply To:   Maria Droujkova   Feb. 3, 2012, 8:57 a.m.

    Yes, I agree!  I think it will take some "retraining" of thought, too, but well worth the effort.

  • Laura Haeberle   Feb. 2, 2012, 7:49 p.m.


    ED218 Developing Math course meeting: Math and the arts. Elluminate webinar


    I attended the ED218 weekly meeting with Professor Droujkova and Sandy G. It was my first webinar, so I was a bit nervous to start, but the environment was comfortable, and we had an engaging discussion on math. There were a few highlights that I found especially informative during our conversation. We discussed the task for the week of creating questions with multiple answers, which led us to talking about curious children. We talked about how to handle tough questions from kids, and how to bring philosophical questions to their level. We questioned how to explain a complex concept like algebra to a wondering child, and the different resources available online.
    We also touched upon how to integrate art into math projects. We looked at art pieces, such as quilts and crochet works, and considered how children could create works of art. Additionally, we thought about how to decorate a classroom, which I was especially interested in. We talked about how you could decorate the walls with amazing math photos or creations (such as fractals) that will inspire questions an curiosity from the children. Overall, I think we had a very productive conversation, and I'm excited to participate in future webinars!
  • Carolyn   Feb. 2, 2012, 5:04 p.m.


    I am unsure of how the meeting tonight wil be working. Do I need a twitter? How do I access it? I was interested in the topic of math fieldtrips for tonight, but could also do one of the ones tomorrow if it doesn't work out. Any help would be great!

  • Maria Droujkova   Feb. 2, 2012, 8:31 p.m.
    In Reply To:   Carolyn   Feb. 2, 2012, 5:04 p.m.


    Tomorrow events are in WiZiQ, which is a webinar environment. There are links on event pages you need to follow during events. Today's Twitter topic will repeat on Monday; you need an account to participate. The site I linked has a help file explaining some ways of doing so: