Category: Communicating Math

Phone Cameras Handle Information in a Snap!

This “Teaching with Tech” column was originally published for MAA Focus but is no longer available on the MAA website. This is a republish of the original column. Recently, I found myself writing a College Algebra test in an airport lounge. Ideally, I write tests from the comfort of my office, with many alternative textbooks within an arm’s reach to use as a reference to find good test problems. But there I was in an airport, and although I didn’t have a shelf full of alternative texts with me (talk about an overweight suitcase), I did have the problems from those...

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Collecting Learning Notebooks in an Online Course

In a prior post, I discussed how I’m using Learning Notebooks to encourage students to carefully think through the mathematical steps and notation for solving problems. I promised that I would explain how students complete this assignment in an online course, so today I’ve made a video, Collecting Learning Notebooks in an Online Course to show you the process I’m using inside of Instructure Canvas.  The process should be similar for other Learning Management Systems (though it may not be quite this easy). Here’s the process.  Students still complete their Learning Notebook exactly how they do in a traditional class....

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Analysis of Online Whiteboard Tools

NOTE: This post was revised considerably on 5/31/12 after a followup use with Dabbleboard proved to be awful.  Given this new development, I have to recommend Scribblar and I will plan to have a “backup” whiteboard handy in case the chosen system is “having a bad day.” When I meet students online for office hours, it’s vitally important that we have an shared online whiteboard to use as a space to do problems.  These online whiteboard tools tend to come and go, so don’t shoot the messenger when one of the tools in the list below disappears. The good...

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Learning Notebooks for Online Math Homework

After teaching math at a community college for 10 years (and using online homework for at least 7 of those), I have noticed that my online math students don’t seem to have the same grasp on notation and the steps to “prove” the solution to a problem as when they did old-fashioned paper & pencil homework.  I have also found that the students who use online homework have become much more unorganized, and are unable to find the work for the problems they have questions on.   This last year, I’ve been experimenting with what I call a “Learning...

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Seamless SAVI Chat in Instructure Canvas

UPDATE: Unfortunately, the video chat service provided in Canvas was turned off in Fall 2012. It has now been replaced with a Text Chat that is built in to Canvas, but no video. Can your LMS do this? What did student have to do to join me? Click on the Chat button, then click to share their webcam. Seamless. This is what I love about Instructure Canvas. There are no extra accounts to set up, no appointments to schedule, and I don’t have to be tech support to get the technology working. Some of my students were using the...

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