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Category: Math for Elem Teachers

History of Numeration Systems

I just stumbled upon this great little video about Ancient Numeration Systems.  It does not go into depth on any particular system, but it wanders through the following: Tally marks Sumerian symbols Babylonian symbols Egyptian symbols Roman symbols and modifications of it Number systems based on the body (Zulu) Commerce-based number systems (Yoruba in Nigeria) Number systems involving knots and string (Persians, Incans) Numerals 0-9 (invented in India) Place value Fractions as a solution for “fair-share” situations in culture Unit Fractions (Egyptians) Fractions with base-60 (Sumerians and Babylonians), still used for time measurements today Abacus (Chinese) Use of the...

Collection of Math Games

To view the collections of Math Games, hover over the Games Menu, and go to one of the dropdown categories.   Possibly Related Posts: Learning at Scale Slides from ICTCM AMATYC Keynote Notes: Challenge and Curiosity Full version of Algeboats is out! Board Games that Change Attitudes Level Up: Video Games for Learning...

Signed Numbers: Colored Counters in a “Sea of Zeros”

The “colored counter” method is an old tried-and-true method for teaching the concept of adding signed numbers.  However, to show subtraction with the colored counter method has always seemed painful to me … that is, until I altered the method slightly. Now all problems are demonstrated within a “Sea of Zeros” and when you need to take away counters, you can simply borrow from the infinite sea.  Voila!  Here’s a short video to demonstrate addition and subtraction of integers using the “Sea of Zeros” method.  You can print some Colored Counter Paper here. Video: Colored Counters in a Sea...

Prime Number Manipulatives

For those of you who are curious what we were actually doing in class in yesterday’s post (Record with a Document Camera and a Flip), we were “fingerprinting” the factors of composite numbers with their prime compositions. The wooden “prime number tiles” are created using the backs of Scrabble tiles and the white tiles you see on the board are the student version of the prime number tiles (each of them cut out a sheet of their own prime number tile manipulatives at the beginning of class).  Just for the record, I would like to confess to destroying more than 5 Scrabble games in the last 6 months. I tell students that the prime numbers are like the building blocks of the whole numbers, in the same way that the nucleotide bases (adenine, guanine, cytosine, and thymine) are the building blocks of DNA. It was ironic, then, that at the end of our prime factorization fingerprinting, the board looked (to me) the way an agarose gel electrophoresis looks. You can also use the prime number tiles to line up the prime factorizations of two numbers (leaving spaces when the prime is not in both numbers) and read the GCF as the intersection of the two lines of tiles and the LCM as the union of the two lines of tiles. I’ve tried explaining these concepts in writing before (circling...

The Projects Get BETTER

The second unit in Math for Elementary Teachers (MathET) is on numeration systems and operations on whole numbers.  Again, the students had to complete a “learning project” for the unit.  Some blogged, some mapped concepts and resources, come made presentations to the class, and some built digital lessons. The students are getting “braver” with what they try with each unit we cover. Here are the best projects from Round 2: Two great Prezi’s, one on Addition & Subtraction and one on Exponent Rules A mindmap that attempts to find games or videos for every topic from the unit (in addition to providing notes on each topic) Another mindmap that used some great color-coding to explain the material A  cartoon (made with Pixton) that is funny AND provides details about the history of the number zero Two great blogs: Ashley’s, Alyssa’s Ohio State Princess, and Leichia’s BusyMomLa Round 3 ends tomorrow, but AMATYC starts tomorrow too, so it will be a few days before I post round 3.  If you’d like to learn more about the Learning Projects for this class, you can read Transforming Math for Elementary Ed. Possibly Related Posts: Elaborations for Creative Thinking in STEM Learning Math is Not a Spectator Sport Recorded Webinar: Teaching Math in 2020 AMATYC Keynote Notes: Challenge and Curiosity AMATYC Keynote Notes: Interaction and...