A serendipitous Pythagorean #LessonStarter

#LessonStarter is a Twitter hashtag, used particularly by Matt Skoss, to collect together ideas that might start (or take over!) a lesson. A #LessonStarter is usually a provocative image, but could also be an intriguing mathematical prompt. For me, lesson starters are often spontaneous. Today, a few serendipitous moments meant that I had a lesson... Continue Reading →

Skyscrapers

This is a quick post mainly for the benefit of my 'Developing Mathematical Thinking' (#math1070) students. Introducing the puzzle Skyscrapers are one of my favourite logic puzzles. They are a Japanese creation, introduced at the first World Puzzle Championship1 in 1992. Skyscrapers are a type of Latin Square puzzle. A Latin Square in an n × n... Continue Reading →

Redux: #NoticeWonder and #PrimeClimb

Last year I wrote a post about using the two simple questions 'What do you notice?' and 'What do you wonder?' with my maths pre-service teachers to dig into the mathematically-rich image that accompanies Dan Finkel's game, Prime Climb. This year, I wanted to turn this into a student-driven rather than teacher-led activity. I also... Continue Reading →

Tangling and untangling

This is the seventh in a series of posts about my course ‘Developing Mathematical Thinking’, a maths content elective for pre-service teachers training in primary and middle maths. All posts in the series are here. WARNING: It's a long post. Edited to fix the confusion between × (multiply) and x (the letter). I have been itching to try Conway's Rational Tangles... Continue Reading →

How many triangles?

It's been quiet on the blog, but a lot has been happening. University classes in Adelaide have just resumed after a two week mid-semester break. To warm up, I gave my MATH 1070 students the following problem. I found it via Tanya Khovanova who states that it was an entrance problem for the 2016 MIT PRIMES STEP Program. (Read more on Tanya's... Continue Reading →

Notice and wonder: the Prime Climb hundreds chart

This is the sixth in a series of posts about my course ‘Developing Mathematical Thinking’, a maths content elective for pre-service teachers training in primary and middle maths. All posts in the series are here. This is the final post detailing how I introduced 'Notice and Wonder' to my pre-service teachers. We've used it for sense making. We've then looked at photos from the world around us and brainstormed... Continue Reading →

Notice and wonder: the world around us

This is the fourth in a planned series of posts about my course ‘Developing Mathematical Thinking’, a maths content elective for pre-service teachers training in primary and middle maths. All posts in the series are here. In my previous post, I talked about how I used sense making as a powerful motivator for the 'Notice and Wonder' routine. My next step was... Continue Reading →

Notice and wonder: sense making

This is the third in a planned series of posts about my course ‘Developing Mathematical Thinking’, a maths content elective for pre-service teachers training in primary and middle maths. All posts in the series are here. It's been three weeks (how time flies!) since I last posted about this course. There are 1.5 workshops that I haven't written about. We also missed three classes... Continue Reading →

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