Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Chapter 23 Reading

The thing that stuck with me the most in this reading was that technology in math will help students learn main concepts without being caught up in the little details (as Danielle already laid out). In my opinion, this is SO important and I'd like to expand on it a little more.
Can you imagine learning how to factor and use the quadratic equation without using graphs to find the answers first? Thinking back on my high school math education, I can't imagine how much I would dislike math if I had to do all the busy work before using a graphing calculator. Using the graphing calculator allowed me to see the "macroprocedure," big picture, without having to put a pencil to paper. I could visualize what the tedious work would lead me to find; this gave the tedious work a purpose. If I had to do all the writing without picturing graphically what I was doing, I am almost positive I wouldn't have enjoyed it or done very well.
Also, in this way, those who learn by seeing the big picture first are aided; those who learn by doing the details are able to do so later through the tedious work.


jmonaco said...

Though seeing the "big picture" is probably a good idea, we should also keep in mind that the actual process of learning how and why something works is very important. A visual is important to some learners, but we should also make sure to take them through the steps of a mathematical idea.

Jess Madigan said...

I completely agree that details are important. I just feel like to begin with, a big/clear picture is helpful when then learning the details.

Even when writing an paper, I feel like a lot of people get caught up in the writing and all the details and lose sight of the main purpose/prompt of the paper.

So yes I definately agree that details are important, but keeping the big picture in your mind as you go through the details is beneficial.

Ben D. said...

I agree with you Jessica in the sense that calculators help a wide range of students, especially those that are spatial learners. However, I feel it necessary for students to learn the tedious work as well because it helps them understand the math concepts and like every math teacher has always told me, "You won't always have a calculator with you!" Although that phrase is so cliche, I believe that the tedious homework is often needed so the students won't be too dependent on calculators. Yet I also believe that checking your work with a calculator is perfectly acceptable and it allows you to practice both methods.