robertogreco + danmeyer   61

“All the time.”
"David Cox:
Yesterday, a student gave me step-by-step directions to solve a Rubik’s Cube. I finished it, but had no idea what I was doing. At times, I just watched what he did and copied his moves without even looking at the cube in my hands.

When we were finished, I exclaimed, “I did it!”, received a high-five from the student and some even applauded. For a moment, I felt like I had accomplished something. That feeling didn’t last long. I asked the class how often they experience what I just did.

They said, “All the time.”

Featured Comment

Lauren Beitel:
Is there an argument to be made that sometimes the conceptual understanding comes from repeating a procedure, then reflecting on it? Discovering/noticing patterns through repetition?

Great question. I wrote a comment [http://blog.mrmeyer.com/2016/all-the-time/#comment-2430188 ] in response."
math  teaching  education  danmeyer  learning  understanding  sfsh  repetition  mimicry  davidcox  laurenbeitel  via:lukeneff  howwelearn  howweteach  schools  meaningmaking 
november 2016 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Testify
"Karim Ani, the founder of Mathalicious, hassles me because I design problems about water tanks while Mathalicious tackles issues of greater sociological importance. Traditionalists like Barry Garelick see my 3-Act Math project as superficial multimedia whizbangery and wonder why we don’t just stick with thirty spiraled practice problems every night when that’s worked pretty well for the world so far. Basically everybody I follow on Twitter cast a disapproving eye at posts trying to turn Pokémon Go into the future of education, posts which no one will admit to having written in three months, once Pokémon Go has fallen farther out of the public eye than Angry Birds.

So this 3-Act math task is bound to disappoint everybody above. It’s a trivial question about a piece of pop culture ephemera wrapped up in multimedia whizbangery.

But I had to testify. That’s what this has always been – a testimonial – where by “this” I mean this blog, these tasks, and my career in math education to date.

I don’t care about Pokémon Go. I don’t care about multimedia. I don’t care about the sociological importance of a question.

I care about math’s power to puzzle a person and then help that person unpuzzle herself. I want my work always to testify to that power.

So when I read this article about how people were tricking their smartphones into thinking they were walking (for the sake of achievements in Pokémon Go), I was puzzled. I was curious about other objects that spin, and then about ceiling fans, and then I wondered how long a ceiling fan would have to spin before it had “walked” a necessary number of kilometers. I couldn’t resist the question.

That doesn’t mean you’ll find the question irresistible, or that I think you should. But I feel an enormous burden to testify to my curiosity. That isn’t simple.

“Math is fun,” argues mathematics professor Robert Craigen. “It takes effort to make it otherwise.” But nothing is actually like that – intrinsically interesting or uninteresting. Every last thing – pure math, applied math, your favorite movie, everything – requires humans like ourselves to testify on its behalf.

In one kind of testimonial, I’d stand in front of a class and read the article word-for-word. Then I’d work out all of this math in front of students on the board. I would circle the answer and step back.

But everything I’ve read and experienced has taught me that this would be a lousy testimonial. My curiosity wouldn’t become anybody else’s.

Meanwhile, multimedia allows me to develop a question with students as I experienced it, to postpone helpful tools, information, and resources until they’re necessary, and to show the resolution of that question as it exists in the world itself.

I don’t care about the multimedia. I care about the testimonial. Curiosity is my project. Multimedia lets me testify on its behalf.

So why are you here? What is your project? I care much less about the specifics of your project than I care how you testify on its behalf.

I care about Talking Points much less than Elizabeth Statmore. I care about math mistakes much less than Michael Pershan. I care about elementary math education much less than Tracy Zager and Joe Schwartz. I care about equity much less than Danny Brown and identity much less than Ilana Horn. I care about pure mathematics much less than Sam Shah and Gordi Hamilton. I care about sociological importance much less than Mathalicious. I care about applications of math to art and creativity much less than Anna Weltman.

But I love how each one of them testifies on behalf of their project. When any of them takes the stand to testify, I’m locked in. They make their project my own.

Again:

Why are you here? What is your project? How do you testify on its behalf?"
danmeyer  2016  math  mathematics  teaching  interestedness  pokémongo  curiosity  mathalicious  testament  multimedia  howweteach  interest  wonder  wondering  askingquestions  questionasking  modeling  education  howwelearn  engagement 
august 2016 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » When Delayed Feedback Is Superior To Immediate Feedback
"Craig Roberts, writing in EdSurge:
Beginning in the 1960s psychologists began to find that delaying feedback could improve learning. An early lab experiment involved 3rd graders performing a task we can all remember doing: memorizing state capitols. The students were shown a state, and two possible capitols. One group was given feedback immediately after answering; the other group after a 10 second delay. When all students were tested a week later, those who received delayed feedback had the highest scores.

Will Thalheimer has a useful review of the literature, beginning on page 14. One might object that whether immediate or delayed feedback is more effective turns on the goals of the study and the design of the experiment.

To which I’d respond, yes, exactly!

Feedback is complicated, but to hear 99% of edtech companies talk, it’s simple. To them, the virtues of immediate feedback are received wisdom. The more immediate the better! Make the feedback immediater!

Dan’s Corollary to Begle’s Second Law applies. If someone says it’s simple, they’re selling you something."
danmeyer  2016  teaching  education  howweteach  feedback  timing  craigroberts  willthalheimer  research  edtech  immediacy  learning  howwelearn  belesshelpful 
february 2016 by robertogreco
The Man Who Will Save Math | New Republic
"Today, Meyer is the Chief Academic Officer at Desmos, a San Francisco startup that offers an online graphing calculator. The company is now building on that tool by offering complete, interactive lesson plans. Like the calculator, the lessons are free to the masses; Desmos plans to profit by selling the product to corporate entities.

The lessons use interactive technology to help students begin with the concrete: One lesson starts with a slab of pavement that must be divided into equally sized parking spaces; another asks students to recreate an animation in graph form. The emphasis is slightly different than Meyer’s old “Three-Act Tasks”: exploration and communication are now privileged over stories. In the parking lot lesson, students draw and redraw their dividers, getting immediate feedback as cars try to pull into their spaces; only gradually do they begin to work with numbers and variables. Other modules ask students to share their models with the class, which allows them to revise their thinking based on the ideas of their peers. Desmos’s lessons are based on the idea of constructivism, a theory that views knowledge as something that must be built by learners themselves.

This is a progressive and rather controversial notion. Developed from the ideas of Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget and American philosopher John Dewey in the twentieth century, it was popularized by reform-minded educators starting in the 1960s. In mathematics, constructivism and other “student-centered” forms of teaching have come under particular fire in mathematics: Are kids really supposed to discover 10,000 years of math all on their own? Meyer’s advisor at Stanford, Jo Boaler, well known for her efforts to make math more widely accessible, has described a concerted effort to discredit her work.

Meyer dismisses his own critics as ideologues. If they see anything that deviates from clear, straightforward explanation, he says, “they have a fuse that is tripped, a certain surge goes through their brain,” he said. “The question is not should we explain, but when should we explain.” Meyer believes we need to provide certain experiences to students before we lecture: showing why a tool is needed, for example, or provoking cognitive conflict, or providing an opportunity to create informal algorithms before the standard algorithms are taught.

I’m a former high school math teacher, and I worked for five years coaching teachers in Mississippi. The students in the schools where I worked were nearly all African American, and many faced the steep challenges of rural poverty. When I first encountered Meyer’s TED Talk in 2010, I was skeptical. But over time I saw too many students who were doing math just because they were told they had to; I began incorporating the ideas of constructivism into the lessons I developed for teachers. The few I could compel to try these lessons found their students’ perceptions of the subject transformed.

But my initial skepticism—and the skepticism of the teachers I coached—is telling. Constructivism is now an old theory, but it’s still uncommon, often associated with privileged private schools. (Meyer says he and his team test all their lessons in classrooms around the Bay Area, and aim to include a range of economic backgrounds and previous experiences with mathematics.) It’s is an ambitious form of teaching, putting high demands on a teachers—who must respond in the moment to each student’s developing ideas. That goes against the cut-the-workload-with-technology mentality pursued by Meyer’s competitors, and it’s a hard sell to administrators at struggling schools, who are often asked to make quick changes in test scores.

Which means Meyer’s quest can’t end with the creation of a few lesson plans, or even an entire textbook. He sees this as a generational project. “You really need the students in these classrooms to grow up and become teachers,” he says. “At that point a cycle begins.” The alien abductions will be over; math will be something that students do, rather than something that’s done to them."
danmeyer  digitalstorytelling  education  immersion  math  mathematics  howweteach  guershonharel  constructivism  piaget  johndewey  joboaler  desmos  boyceupholt  jeanpiaget 
december 2015 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Your Conference Session Is The Appetizer. The Internet Is The Main Dish.
"ISTE just wrapped. NCTM wrapped several months ago. What was accomplished? What can you remember of the sessions you attended? Will those sessions change your practice and in what ways?

Zak Champagne, Mike Flynn, and I are all NCTM conference presenters and we were all concerned about the possibility that a) none of our participants did much with our sessions once they ended, b) lots of people who might benefit from our sessions (and whose questions and ideas might benefit us) weren’t in the room.

The solution to (b) is easy. Put video of the sessions on the Internet. Our solution to (a) was complicated and only partial:

Build a conference session so that it prefaces and provokes work that will be ongoing and online.

To test out these solutions, we set up Shadow Con after hours at NCTM. We invited six presenters each to give a ten-minute talk. Their talk had to include a “call to action,” some kind of closing homework assignment that participants could accomplish when they went home. The speakers each committed to help participants with that homework on the session website we set up for that purpose.

Then we watched and collected data. There were two major surprises, which we shared along with other findings with the NCTM president, president-elect, and executive director.

Here is the five-page brief we shared with them. We’d all benefit from your feedback, I’m sure."

[Document: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1c2Gsa3yRyJS8etrosi6KvvwNXPO_Mnzoh_AIp5vA34c/edit

"We were surprised to find that engagement in the talks was much greater on Twitter than on the website we created to host that engagement. People would watch the talks and then debate and discuss its substance through tweets on Twitter rather than through comments on our website."



"We recommend that NCTM provides each of its speakers with an anchor for their talks – a webpage – even if initially that anchor is only loosely embedded in the ground. The speakers themselves must voluntarily drive that anchor deeper by adding supporting resources, linking to conversations off site, uploading video or audio of their talks, offering a call to action, and interacting with the attendees who choose to extend their engagement. NCTM cannot do that work for the speakers, nor should they if they could, but NCTM’s current website forecloses speakers from doing that work if they want to. NCTM’s current website only allows speakers to strengthen their attachment to their audiences by uploading handouts.

We ask NCTM’s leadership to consider that the number of people who view the talks in Boston will never increase. That number is fixed at the people who were in the room on that day, at that time, limiting both engagement and access. Meanwhile, talks hosted online can increase in viewership effectively without limit, edifying viewers, spreading ideas, populating pages of search results, and promoting NCTM itself as the leading organization for math teachers for decades. We encourage NCTM to take several large steps down that path in the months and years to come." ]
danmeyer  2015  conferences  professionaldevelopment  nctm  iste  callstoaction  internet  web  twitter  video 
july 2015 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » WTF Math Problems
"These seem like essential features:

• These problems are all brief. They slot easily into an opener.
• They look forward and backward. They fit right in the gap between an old concept and the new. They review the old (slope in this case) while setting up the new (collinearity).
• Students encounter an unexpected result. The world is either more orderly (the slope example above) or less orderly (see problem #2) than they thought.

And the weirdest feature:

• They require the teacher to be cunning, actively concealing the upcoming WTF, assuring students that, yes, this problem is as trivial as you think it is, knowing all the while that it isn’t.

When did they teach you that in your teacher training?

It’s striking to me that the history of mathematics is driven by the explanations following these WTF moments:

• We knew how to divide numbers. We didn’t know how to divide by zero. Enter Newton & Leibniz explanation of calculus.
• We knew how to find the square roots of positive numbers, but not negative. Enter Euler’s explanation of imaginary numbers.
• We knew what Eucld’s geometry looked like, but what if parallel lines could meet. Enter the explanation of hyperbolic, spherical, and other non-Euclidean geometries.
• There are lots of WTF moments that haven’t yet been explained."

----------

"In school mathematics, though, we simply give the explanations, without paying even the briefest homage to the WTFs that provoked them.

What Farrand and you and I are trying to do here is restore some of that WTF to our math curriculum, without forcing students to re-create thousands of years of intellectual struggle."
danmeyer  math  mathematics  teaching  howweteach  2015  henripicciotto  scottfarrand  education  learning  leibniz 
january 2015 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Adaptive Learning Is An Infinite iPod That Only Plays Neil Diamond
"If all you've ever heard in your life is Neil Diamond's music, you might think we've invented something quite amazing there. Your iPod contains the entire universe of music. If you've heard any other music at all, you might still be impressed by this infinite iPod. Neil wrote a lot of music after all, some of it good. But you'll know we're missing out on quite a lot also.

So it is with the futurists, many of whom have never been in a class where math was anything but watching someone lecture about a procedure and then replicating that procedure twenty times on a piece of paper. That entire universe fits neatly within a computer-adaptive model of learning.

But for math educators who have experienced math as a social process where students conjecture and argue with each other about their conjectures, where one student's messy handwritten work offers another student a revelation about her own work, a process which by definition can't be individualized or self-paced, computer-adaptive mathematics starts to seem rather limited.

Lectures and procedural fluency are an important aspect of a student's mathematics education but they are to the universe of math experiences as Neil Diamond is to all the other amazing artists who aren't Neil Diamond.

If I could somehow convince the futurists to see math the same way, I imagine our conversations would become a lot more productive.

BTW. While I'm here, Justin Reich wrote an extremely thoughtful series of posts on adaptive learning last month that I can't recommend enough:

Blended Learning, But The Data Are Useless
http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/edtechresearcher/2014/04/blended_learning_but_the_data_are_useless.html

Nudging, Priming, and Motivating in Blended Learning
http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/edtechresearcher/2014/04/nudging_priming_and_motivating_in_blended_learning.html

Computers Can Assess What Computers Do Best
http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/edtechresearcher/2014/04/computers_can_assess_what_computers_do_best.html "
danmeyer  edtech  adaptivelearning  education  2014  blendedlearning  lectures  neildiamond  computing  computers  closedsystems  transcontextualization  via:lukeneff  transcontextualism 
may 2014 by robertogreco
Squishy Not Slick - squishy not slick, the edtech futurist version / #thoughtvectors not call centers
"lots of rumblings lately, lots of connections

[most of this will just serve as placeholders until I have more time to fill in the missing pieces]

Is the future of educational technology going to look like a call center? (https://twitter.com/tressiemcphd/status/467867731254333441 )

Rob led me to Gardner Campbell’s talk (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIzA4ItynYw ) [who I just realized is a colleague of some of my favorite people on the internet, @jonbecker and @twoodwar who are working on the #thoughtvectors thing at VCU], in which he explains the point of all this as ”networked transcontextualism,” which is the way to escape “the double bind,” a term from Gregory Bateson. (https://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&q=gregory+bateson&btnG=&as_sdt=1%2C38&as_sdtp= )

In the same vein, Audrey Watters says all the right things (https://storify.com/rogre/more-audrey-watters-in-your-stream-please ) [and thanks to Rob for storifying it]

Seymour Papert (https://scholar.google.com/scholar?as_vis=1&q=seymour+papert&hl=en&as_sdt=1,38 ) keeps coming up [Campbell and Watters mention him]

Campbell’s “networked transcontextualism” especially reminded me of what Richard Elmore had to say about all this (http://www.c-span.org/video/?c4088865/richard-elmore-futures-school-reform ), that we’re moving from “nested hierarchy” to “networked relationships.”

Then Dan Meyer joined in, saying it with a Neil Diamond analogy. (http://blog.mrmeyer.com/2014/adaptive-learning-is-an-infinite-ipod-that-only-plays-neil-diamond/ )

This is all happens while I’m trying to make Sugata Mitra’s SOLE idea (http://www.ted.com/participate/ted-prize/prize-winning-wishes/school-in-the-cloud ), or something similar, happen in more traditional classrooms, an attempt at finding an alternate path, an escape from the call center version of our edtech future."
lukeneff  audreywatters  2014  gardnercampbell  jonbecker  tomwoodward  gregorybateson  danmeyer  seymourpapert  sugatamitra  sole  transcontextualism  edtech  education  learning  teaching  connections  networks  doublebind  richardelmore  transcontextualization 
may 2014 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » My Opening Keynote for CUE 2014
"I started by describing why edtech presentations often make me aggravated. Then I described my "edtech mission statement," which helps me through those presentations and helps me make tough choices for my limited resources."

[Direct link to video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FRsE6mKkDjw ]

BTW. I was also interviewed at CUE for the Infinite Thinking Machine with Mark Hammons.

[That video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x1J831tffJ4 ]
edtech  danmeyer  teaching  math  mathematics  technology  curiosity  cue  cue2014  perplexity  online  internet  howwework  sharing  blogging  professionaldevelopment  learning  education  noticing  interestedness  del.icio.us  rss  interestingness  keynote  documentcameras  photography  video  mobile  phones  remembering  ela  languagearts  wcydwt  2014  askingquestions  presentations  engagement  lectures  lecturing  questionasking  interested 
april 2014 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » “The Verb Of My Life Is Learning”
"Comedian Louis CK, on bypassing ticket retailers to sell seats directly to fans through his website:
Well, it’s all so interesting. It’s all so interesting. It really is. I love knowing why I was able to sell out in one town, and why I wasn’t in another town. I love knowing what goes into everything—the economics, the technical aspect, and how to create the ideas in the show. It’s great. If you can have access to all of that, why would you not want to know? I just love learning. I think learning is how you live. The verb of my life is learning.

There are people who find failure interesting. Those people's failures are often more interesting than their peers' successes. Their lives also tend towards success even though the prospect of a successful life motivates them less than the prospect of an interesting one."
learning  learningisfun  via:lukeneff  life  louisck  danmeyer  curiosity  human  howtolive 
august 2012 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Kate On Khan
"BTW. As long as we're here: Khan Academy frequently asserts itself as interested in more than lectures and procedures. Whenever a blogger points out that, "No, there's not a whole lot of evidence for that," a Khan Academy proponent named Jay Patel (who comments under various pseudonyms on this blog and others) will often link to this page in the Khan Academy customer portal, which cites as its project-based bonafides an activity called Simpsons Sunblocker. No problem there, except that Simpsons Sunblocker was developed by my team at Stanford — here's the activity; have fun! — not Khan Academy, whose representatives tried to convince us we should do the activity only after the students watched a lecture about proportions and practiced those procedures. (Playing a game of basketball only after shooting hours of foul shots, essentially.)"
khanacademy  pbl  projectbasedlearning  danmeyer  2012  katenowak  via:tom.hoffman 
july 2012 by robertogreco
dy/dan » On iBooks 2 And iBooks Author
"Algebra, as designed by McGraw-Hill for iBooks 2, is lighter by pounds. It's indexed for search. It's quick. You can highlight the text and insert notes. It removes one layer of abstraction between students and tools that already existed. Rather than accessing quizzes, tutorials, and enrichment videos by loading a CD-ROM into a computer or entering a password into a website, they're a tap away.

That's where the differences end. Students still interact with mathematics as they always have…

What I'm saying, basically, is that I'd have to modify, adapt, and extend the McGraw-Hill iBook in all the same ways that I modified, adapted, and extended the McGraw-Hill print textbook. We'd pull out the iBook just as infrequently as its printed sibling."
2012  algebra  learning  education  textbooks  ibooks  danmeyer  teaching  math  ibooksauthor  from delicious
february 2012 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » It’s Called iBooks Author, Not iMathTextbooks Author, And The Trouble That Results
"Print textbooks are powerless to facilitate that moment right there. Teachers can't facilitate it, not at anywhere near the speed and ease I'm suggesting. iBooks Author can't facilitate it either, but if it could — if it had some kind of "Q&A;" widget that lived alongside its other widgets and basically copied all the options from Google Forms — I'd find the platform difficult to resist.

But iBooks Author doesn't exist for the pleasure of math education publishers or even education publishers. "This is about Apple versus Amazon for who will sell digital literature in the future," says Audrey Watters. "This isn't really about textbooks."

iBooks Author serves publishers, period. It'll help you publish your Firefly fan fiction, your autobiography, or your Nana's recipe collection. It's extremely useful, broadly speaking, which inevitably means that, narrowly speaking to math education publishers, it's much less useful."
education  teaching  math  ibooksauthor  books  publishing  danmeyer  2012  textbooks  ibooks  from delicious
february 2012 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Making It All Worthwhile
"I've facilitated enough PD to not feel new at it. I've taken enough coursework in PD at Stanford to feel like I get some of the theory behind teaching adults about teaching children. Whenever I'm planning a session or a talk, though, I don't lean on the theory or my experience half as hard as I do on the fear that I'll be working with a teacher who's exactly like me, and he'll hate me. Which is to say, rather, that I'll hate me.

My urinal buddy helped me understand that whenever I blog or facilitate PD or give a talk or drive in traffic or cook a meal or talk to my friends, subconsciously, I'm always wondering, "Would I hate me?" It's a coin flip, really, whether that's evidence of personal integrity or flagrant self-absorption."
danmeyer  teaching  speaking  pd  professionaldevelopment  integrity  self-absorption  empathy  from delicious
july 2011 by robertogreco
Google: Exploring Computational Thinking
"Easily incorporate computational thinking into your curriculum with these classroom-ready lessons, examples, and programs. For more resources, including discussion forums and news, visit our ECT Discussion Forums."

[See also: http://googleresearch.blogspot.com/2010/10/exploring-computational-thinking.html ]
computerscience  computationalthinking  via:lukeneff  algebra  biology  calculus  compsci  geometry  python  programming  math  lessons  teaching  thinking  edtech  education  elearning  danmeyer  google  science  learning  glvo  edg  srg  from delicious
november 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » What Can You Do With This: Yellow Lights
"So I'm thinking about an ongoing classroom project, something that includes a wall map of the county, push-pins marking off claimed intersections, students collecting data with stopwatches or cameras, developing (what seems to them) a fair algorithm for the duration of yellow lights, then researching the county code to determine the actual algorithm, finally marching down to city hall to call the mayor on the carpet (if need be) for his reckless disregard for public safety in pursuit of a little extra revenue."
danmeyer  civics  government  math  tcsnmy  classideas 
july 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Impatience With Irresolution, pt 1: Part Of The Problem
"Nowadays, I don't much care what they answer. I'm disinterested. I want to get past their answer. My response to their answer is an automated "Why?" That's where the action is.

I have been asking questions lately like "If the students in our class are the domain of a relationship, is their hair color a function?" which you can successfully defend from either angle.

I like the debates. I like the fights. I'm happy that we're slowly detoxing off our addiction to easy answers, taking longer to answer questions that are worth more of our time."

[Rediscovering this stuff courtesy Basti. This one continues with part 2 at: blog.mrmeyer.com/?p=2971 ]
assessment  learning  patience  students  irresolution  uncertainty  ambiguity  danmeyer  glvo  tcsnmy  questions  questioning  pedagogy  socraticmethod  relationships  answers  davidmilch  belesshelpful  storytelling  narrative 
june 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » We Had Too Much Time On Our Hands [Dan Meyer runs a UChicago-like (http://scavhunt.uchicago.edu/) Scavenger Hunt with some students *outside* of class]
"This seems dead on to me. Imagination can be threatening and scary if you aren't accustomed to doing something with it. It seemed necessary to trigger the imagination of my students slowly, with progressively harder challenges, so that they'd reach the hardest challenge with confidence and competence, thinking to themselves three things:...I'm really glad we did this. We fell way short of my expectations, but it's hard to reconcile that fact with the wide grin on my face when I think back on the whole thing." [See also: http://scavhunt.uchicago.edu/ AND http://www.clusterflock.org/2010/06/dont-miss-46.html]
danmeyer  creativity  teaching  fun  classideas  tcsnmy  scavengerhunts  persistence  failingspectacularly 
june 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » You Have No Life
"We have watched some incredible videos lately—Rube Goldberg machines & time lapse photography—& if video smacks even slightly of concentrated effort or advance planning, someone will inevitably scoff that subject has "too much time on his hands" or "no life."...I would so much rather my students understood the value of turning stupid ideas into reality than the entire sum of Algebra1. It's so obvious to me that the kind of person who would create a cocktail-mixer from balsa wood & twine is simply blowing off steam that life will eventually focus in a direction that will be extremely constructive and/or profitable. I can't make this obvious to my students. After six years I lack a succinct, meaningful response to my students' defensive, clannish embrace of mediocrity, though I'm grateful for this tweet, which comes pretty close: dwineman: You say "looks like somebody has too much time on their hands" but all I hear is "I'm sad because I don't know what creativity feels like.""
attitudes  creativity  geek  criticism  lifehacks  motivation  productivity  ingenuity  persistence  danmeyer  fun  mediocrity 
june 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Teaching WCYDWT: Storytelling ["A recommendation: turn your learning into a story for somebody else."]
""Perplex them," one of my old high school math teachers advised me when I told him I was going into teaching. Perplexity isn't the same as confusion; rather, it's a very, very productive form of confusion. My favorite teachers and storytellers perplex me repeatedly throughout a lesson or movie.

How do you teach people to tell perplexing stories? Even harder question: how do you teach people to tell perplexing stories about math?

My fear is that this skill, more than most others in my practice, reduces to character traits that can't be taught. Storytelling requires empathy, an understanding of an audience's expectations, their current knowledge, and their prior experience. I don't know how you teach empathy. Perhaps it can only be modeled."

[Gotta read the whole thing and the comments, including Kathy Sierra's two cents.]
storytelling  teaching  perplexity  tcsnmy  narrative  learning  understanding  empathy  kathysierra  danmeyer 
june 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Teaching WCYDWT: Learning [this links to a comment by Luke Neff]
"The main problem or difference between WCYDWT for English as compared to math is that it’s hard to know what they’ll do with these things you give to them. Sometimes it takes unexpected turns. I’m learning to go with the flow on these things.
lukeneff  wcydwt  flow  teaching  learning  tcsnmy  english  humanities  classideas  danmeyer 
may 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » TEDxNYED Metadata [Forgot to bookmark this—thanks to Basti for making it resurface. Also, see the comment from Michael Wesch.]
"I'm not saying that the only people capable of describing or critiquing classroom teaching are classroom teachers. There are people who don't work in a classroom who know a lot more about my business than I do. I'm saying it's difficult, as one of public education's foot soldiers, to do much with inspiration. I don't have many places to put inspiration, certainly not as many as the edtechnologists walking away from TEDxNYED minds buzzing, faces aglow, and so it tends to settle and coagulate around my bile duct. It's too hard to forget that tomorrow I and three million others will have to teach too many standards of too little quality to too many students with too few resources. What can you do with this?"
danmeyer  education  tedxnyed  curriculum  math  reflection  reform  theory  practical  doingvsimagining  wcydwt  teaching  schools  doing  inspiration  doingvsinspiring  edtech  hereandnow  now  implementation  constraints  frustration  flexibility  constructivecriticism  power  control  jeffjarvis  michaelwesch  georgesiemens  davidwiley  andycarvin 
may 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » “F–k The Exposition”
"Treme's pilot, true to Simon's challenging aesthetic, dumps the viewer into an unfamiliar-but-compelling environment full of unfamiliar-but-compelling people and trusts that, because the whole thing is so damn compelling, you'll be back the next week to learn more.

Simon outsources the teacher's usual role as classroom expositor to the Internet while claiming for himself the role as classroom storyteller, turning the unknown into something challenging, enticing, and compelling.

Tell me that division of labor isn't ideal. Tell me you couldn't dedicate a career to that mission statement. Tell me you couldn't do it for social studies or science or even math."
davidimon  danmeyer  teaching  schools  internet  web  online  kathysierra  narrative  storytelling  creativity  writing  tcsnmy  context  google  treme 
april 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Easy. Fun. Free.
"If [x] is going to change teaching practice at scale, then [x] needs to be easy, fun, and free for both the teacher and her students. [x] needs to be all three of those things at the same time. ... I don’t have any hope in the scalable transformational power of any tool that requires anything more than ten minutes of professional development."
tumblr  technology  interteaching  professionaldevelopment  learning  googlereader  schools  education  tcsnmy  lms  pln  ples  schooling  danmeyer 
march 2010 by robertogreco
Trends in Ed, 2.18.10 | EdLab - Math sees a future with web 2.0
"Is it a match made in Heaven? According to Maria Droujkova, developer of Natural Math and Math 2.0, it is! Droujikova saw the need for math to catch up to other subjects with regards to web 2.0 communities. Her response was to create math programs in which learning takes place within communities and networks-- a mashup between traditional math practices and social networking. This has given birth to the concept of social math:"
math  teaching  learning  education  tcsnmy  collaborative  networking  social  authoring  community  psychology  scratch  geogebra  danmeyer  wcydwt  xkcd  youtube  manyeyes  flickr  voicethread  problemsolving  instructables 
february 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Global Darkening
"The Daily Show made great work last week out of our tendency to confuse short-term fluctuations with long-term trends, shining a particularly bright spotlight on the it's-cold-outside-so-global-warming-isn't-real crowd. I found the clip so effective, I downloaded it, and tucked it safely away in my vault.
danmeyer  globalwarming  extrapolation  climatechange  humor  jonstewart  math  science 
february 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » (One Of Many Reasons) Why Students Hate Algebra
"Would a real person need to solve this problem?...the solution realistic?...using a system of 2 equations?...in what ways does this problem help our students become better problem solvers?"...problem you will only find in a textbook...bizarre...how many different ways just 50 words can fail to square with reality. Why does each chaperone have to drive? Why can't we take 5 vans? Why do our vehicles have to seat the exact number of people in our group & no more?...Algebra teachers sell students a cheap distortion of the real world while insisting at the same time that it really is the real world. The cognitive dissonance is obvious & terrible. Students know the difference. It cheapens my relationship to them & their relationship to mathematics when you ask me to lie to them...Not only are the short-term consequences devastating but it makes that person distrustful or wary of the real thing. Make no mistake. We are making an alien of algebra. We are doing real damage here."
math  algebra  education  tcsnmy  teaching  learning  reality  disservice  realworld  realism  distortion  schools  schooling  textbooks  cognitivedissonance  deschooling  unschooling  authenticity  danmeyer 
january 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » On Getting The Concept Checklist Wrong These Last Six Years
"Their highest score matters much more to me than the specific ordering of low scores preceding it. So forget the earlier low scores. Students add length to the bar as they improve on earlier scores. This checklist design is consistent with our class ethic that "what you know now matters to us more than what you used to know," whereas the other design maintains a permanent record of "what you used to know.""
danmeyer  math  teaching  conceptchecklists 
january 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » This Blog Is Counterproductive
Dan Meyer reacts to these four quotes on his previous post: "#1 I read stuff like this, and the first thought that goes through my mind is, “Man, I suck at teaching math.” #2 I’m with Steve. I realize how far I am from where I should be. #3 I’m with Steve and Craig- I can’t teach this way yet because my brain isn’t aware/smart/intuitive/mathematical enough to first notice these things, then develop a lesson, and actually deliver and make sense of it. #4 I’ll echo Steve’s comment, I read this site and I feel like a fraud. I don’t know anything about teaching math." [Feeling like a fraud — it's not unfamiliar, but I suppose that's the product of always taking a hard look at yourself and your practices and striving to do better. Anyone who wants to improve him/herself probably has the thought on a regular basis.]
teaching  danmeyer  learning  self  cv  frauds  self-criticism  professionaldevelopment  tcsnmy  impostors  impostorphenomenon  impostorsyndrome 
january 2010 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Asilomar #1: What Do We Do With Algebra II
"Leinwand opened his talk: "The great divider of our time is the Algebra II final exam. Algebra II squeezes off options for so many kids. Algebra II is anathema to all but the top 20% of the population. My premise: as currently implemented, high school algebra I and II are not working and not meeting either societal or student needs."
education  schools  schooling  math  algebra  algebraii  danmeyer  learning  change  reform 
december 2009 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » My O’Reilly Webcast: 2009 October 1
"It's an overwrought title, sure, but it's hard for me to overestimate the damage I did in my first five years teaching. I thought I was building up intellectually adventurous learners who would be patient with problems that didn't resolve neatly or conform quickly to any of the example problems I'd already coached them through when, point of fact, I was doing the opposite. I don't have any illusion that five hours of sturdy, problem-based math education each week will counteract the intellectual Novocaine our students consume throughout the other 163, but we can at least do no harm."
math  teaching  pedagogy  learning  danmeyer  education  resolution  irresolution  problemsolving  process  tcsnmy 
october 2009 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » A Fifth-Year Teacher’s Creed ["Be less helpful."]
"Because out there, in the world, no one will helpfully tell them what chapter of the book they're looking at, no one will helpfully reference the relevant sample problem.
teaching  criticalthinking  education  learning  tcsnmy  wisdom  simplicity  data  information  understanding  deschooling  unschooling  mentoring  danmeyer 
july 2009 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » But How Do I Remediate THAT? [see the comment thread too]
"What I'm saying is that, when I play, for example, this fantastic loop of time lapse photography, my Algebra 1 students sit a few millimeters closer to the edges of their seats and lean a few degrees closer to the screen than do my Remedial Algebra students. They call out observations and deconstruct the movie in ways the remedial classes do not anticipate. In general, they seem eager to engage the unknown whereas my Remedial Algebra students seem to prefer that the unknown stay unknown, that life's unturned rocks stay unturned."
danmeyer  engagement  tracking  mathematics  learning  math  students  risk  education  teaching  schools 
june 2009 by robertogreco
dy/dan » The Jazz Singer
"Darren: My favourite bit came at the very end when the teacher turned and spoke to the camera: “That was gooood!” That comment encompassed so much; about him, his students, and how they all feel for each other." = "A milligram of sober deconstruction ("why do I like this?") is worth, for my money, a kilogram of exuberant, big-picture futurism ("how does this change everything?!"). It would do this old curmudgeon's heart some good to see some balanced restored to our discussions of ancient arts."
teaching  arts  technology  futurism  danmeyer  video  storytelling  schools  edubloggers  music 
may 2009 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Wherever You Can Find It
"The idea that schools are only about the kids is a problem because, as much as I am a proponent of student-centered learning, we have to do a better job of taking care of the adults because we are losing too many of our best young teachers. And we’re not losing them because they don’t like the job, we’re losing them because we aren’t creating pathways for them to feel good about their job without it coming at incredibly high cost." - Chri Lehmann
teaching  careers  danmeyer  chrislehmann  burnout  education  administration  leadership  management 
november 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » My Shortest-Ever Post On Presentation
"1. Unless your presentation is billed as "beginner-level" don't include information I can easily Google. What I mean is, while I know nothing about Photo Story, it was painful spending seat-time on a tutorial for adding narration to Photo Story, which is Google's top result for the same query. I can get that anytime1. 2. Instead, cover the stuff I can't Google, that stuff that makes your presence worth my district's money and my time. Here's an easy outline: a) why Photo Story; what problem were you trying to solve? should I care about that problem? b) what complications did you encounter while implementing Photo Story? how did you overcome them? c) what did you learn?"
presentations  danmeyer  conferences  professionaldevelopment  teaching  learning  speaking  education 
october 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » ILC 2008 [or why I have long sinced stopped going to education conferences unless forced to do so]
"As a guy who teaches compulsory Algebra to kids who have hated Algebra, I don't see how fourteen presenters managed to blow a scenario where an audience volunteered to attend their sessions. Where the audience is interested in the session (provided the presenter didn't falsely bill it). Where the audience is pulling for the presenter. Where the audience is eager to be dazzled, fed, or inspired. ILC was like walking into eighteen car dealerships, pockets bulging with cash, declaring to every salesperson, "I'm here to buy," and discovering that fourteen of them couldn't close the sale." Follow-up post here: http://blog.mrmeyer.com/?p=1712
presentations  professionaldevelopment  learning  speaking  education  teaching  danmeyer  conferences 
october 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Geometry: The Supplement
"This supplement comprises 2,144 slides and 1.94 GB — a lot of a/v content, in other words, some of which I did not author and do not have explicit permission to republish. Sorry about that. Every respect has been paid to Fair Use. Every effort has been made at attribution.

Textbook assignments and certain diagrams, for example, reference Discovering Geometry, a very good Geometry text. The opener miscellany, for another example, is lifted from both Snapple® caps and Vital Statistics, a reference text which is just as good as Snapple® but in a different way. If you are a copyright holder (or know one) and I missed your attribution, please let me know via dan at mrmeyer dot com and we will make that right.

The rest is yours to use under a Creative Commons attribution-noncommercial-sharealike license. This supplement is provided as is. Your suggestions are welcome and appreciated but, due to time constraints, this is not a wiki."
geometry  education  curriculum  math  powerpoint  lessons  lectures  danmeyer  howto 
september 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » dy/av : 001 : earn the medium
Good advice about considering whether the medium you're using is the best for what you are trying to accomplish.
teaching  video  audio  podcasting  technology  text  presentations  engagement  time  students  attention  danmeyer 
june 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » The 2008 University of Chicago Scavenger Hunt
"The University of Chicago annually hosts the most comprehensive scavenger hunt you have ever seen, comprising eighteen pages, 269 items, and a 1,000 mile radius, and then they post the list."
fun  classideas  scavengerhunts  puzzles  play  arg  games  gaming  danmeyer 
june 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » You See The Problem, Right?
"Yeah, it’s like that. Teachers oughtta ask and re-ask, what is the goal of my class, and are my grades an accurate reflection of that goal? Me? Perfect attendance, classwork completion, homework completion, these aren’t my goals."
teaching  learning  schools  policy  homework  attendance  assessment  education  schooling  danmeyer 
may 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » My Next School [Nice list. See also chatter in the comments.]
"As much to reckon my own thoughts as to assist other job-seekers, in descending order of importance, my employment criteria are...I need a job where I live and die by the strength of my work. Teaching is not that job but it has too much yet to teach me t
teaching  work  jobs  administration  education  learning  careers  leadership  management  schools  danmeyer 
may 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » If Wit And Policy Were One And The Same
see comments reacing to this quote from an article in the Boston Globe: "It's almost as though it makes sense to align compensation with system goals or something…but we know that's crazy talk…"
compensation  teaching  administration  leadership  management  careers  pay  money  schools  education  learning  danmeyer 
may 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Between Simple And Easy
"I'm talking about clear, minimal constraints which require complicated, comprehensive thought. These problems are rare, but some lucky days they arise from a single image, like the one up there, like the one today."
math  teaching  curriculum  questions  learning  danmeyer 
may 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » The Most Dangerous Game
"My freshmen came into first period flashing the same signals and I asked them, "Gawah?" They told me this: 1. You flash the birdman at anyone sworn into the game. If the flashee makes unblocked eye contact with the flasher..."
games  play  fun  arg  classideas  danmeyer  todo 
may 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Who Do We Think We Are?
"career in teaching is more meaningful than any other profession."...refrain isn't new...but my reaction has reached a boil...I need more from my 60-hour work week, more from my career, and more from my job than poems and platitudes."
teaching  competition  schools  learning  professionalism  public  money  government  efficiency  administration  management  accountability  unions  leadership  work  danmeyer 
april 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Sobriety [comment to follow-up post to http://blog.mrmeyer.com/?p=750]
"Arguably most successful, cost effective enterprise in world is computer industry...inhabitants of this endeavor are degreed but decidedly unlicensed...differ from our ‘industry’ is they inhabit world of relentless competition, externally & internall
teaching  competition  schools  learning  professionalism  public  money  government  efficiency  administration  management  accountability  unions  leadership  work  danmeyer 
april 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » What We Aren’t Talking About
"Unless my experience as a classroom manager is several deviations below the mean, other people are struggling with this as I have struggled. New teachers are struggling with this. So why is classroom management the farthest topic from anyone's blog?
learning  management  classroommanagement  teaching  schools  danmeyer 
march 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Crisis of Faith
"I find myself entirely uninterested in matters ed-tech, ed-policy, or ed-anything related, aside from what’s going on in my own classroom. The Twitterverse (cringe) bores the hell out of me; I’ve nothing to blog about; and too much of my time has bee
technology  schools  education  policy  edtech  learning  teaching  frustration  disengagement  productivity  work  danmeyer 
january 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Unexamined Idolatry
"right to refuse ill-supported, obtuse, irrelevant, redundant tech not been measured enough to warrant judicious use in classroom by teacher...never in my life seen phrase like “but it’s the 21st century” get more unexamined idolatry."
technology  education  criticism  critique  teaching  learning  schools  policy  danmeyer 
january 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » No Country For Old Teachers
"When you remove some scaffolding from your routine, you determine quickly if it was a) essential or b) a low-cost substitution for the essential. I'm noticing this everywhere lately."
teaching  learning  education  presentations  film  danmeyer 
january 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Your 20th Century Sales Pitch Of A 21st Century Product
"on rickety teeter-totter between both skeptical kids & teachers...tech coordinators have threshold-rejecting process even rougher...oughtta realize...this makes hungry, persuasive salesmanship more essential to their job description, not less."
technology  education  schools  cv  learning  leadership  administration  curriculum  teaching  danmeyer 
january 2008 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » The Red Dot
"Information Design and I'm pretty sure it is the mathematical skill most lacking in our high school graduates."..."The following is one of the most scary-awesome information designs I've seen in a month...It concerns poker"
infodesign  information  infographics  learning  math  education  schools  curriculum  literacy  statistics  edwardtufte  cheating  data  graphics  charts  danmeyer 
october 2007 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Can We Dial The Hype Machine Down A Little Bit?
"the next educational paradigm? Really? Ustream ...choppy, low-res medium,...pushes unedited, free-associative thought onto the careless vodcaster...streamcasts circling for 13 minutes the same point one could make in a coupla body paragraphs."
ustream  video  hype  edubloggers  education  learning  precision  productivity  online  internet  web  efficiency  toolabuse  beacusewecan  danmeyer 
october 2007 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Dear School 2.0: Please Stop.
"Here in School 1.5 territory, we're interested in your methods but we find your company unpleasant...My classroom and I are moving towards the 21st century...incrementally, in ways that are oftentimes imperceptible. You must know that we're doing this in
schools  education  reform  technology  progress  web  online  policy  politics  curriculum  teaching  administration  danmeyer 
june 2007 by robertogreco

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