Teaching students the definitions of mean, median and mode is important, and students should learn how to calculate each of these as well. Mrs. Remille, in Chapter 12, took the lesson on statistics and data calculations to a new level. Giving the students a hands on experience with seeing how statistics work, how a minor or major change can affect the outcome, and learning what the results signify was a great way to assure the students to understood statistics. Teaching formulas on how to find mean, median and mode is one thing, but giving the students the opportunity to analyze the data and sincerely understand statistics is a superb way for a teacher to allow the students to become familiar with the information.

Stastistics are used in everything, not only math. For a student to receive a good foundation of statistics at an early age can only help him or her. He or she can later calculate grades, understand what a newscaster is talking about when rattling off stastistics, and use stastics in a future career. Mrs. Remille went about teaching the students in a creative way, asking questions that only made them more eager to seek the answer. I find the biggest challenge at hand is just that: being creative and coming up with exciting ways to express ideas and teach the foundations of math that can be used every day.

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I think that creativity with technology (especially with spreadsheets) in math classrooms is one of the most challenging aspects of the field. I think that the creativity will mainly lie with taking little portions from lessons and making them into bigger presentations with technology. After all, as a math teacher once told me, "Math is everywhere." I think that it is very important in math classrooms to not only use some creativity, but also to let the students have hands-on experience, as your author said. So many of my math teachers used technology as a visual aid, rather than as a helpful learning tool that the students could use as well. I think that if you find a way to combine the two, you will have an extremely successful math classroom.

Jen,

Your comment on creativity made me realize the many ways creativity fits into Mrs. Remille's lesson. Not only do you have to creatively think of a way to incorporate technology into the lesson, as Mrs. Remille used Excel in Chapter 12, but she also had to be creative in the example she used. If she had used data about the number of bacteria in different molds, the students would probably not have been interested. Using a creative example was an important aspect of her lesson. Finally she has to be creative in her approach to the lesson. Being flexible and letting the students contribute their ideas was also important in making her lesson effective. Thus, as future teachers we should all let our creativity flow free so we can engage our students each and every day.

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