The purpose of my blog is to document my experiences while taking Math for Elementary teachers 1510/1512. It is a reflection on what i learned and my opinions on teaching math.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Teaching to the right crowd - Math 1512

This week in class we were to read an article posted on NCTM’s website. The article was on grades 3-5 and their ability to master geometry.   The site was very beneficial because it lists why students in grades 3-5 are able to learn geometry instead of at an earlier or later age. It is because of the student’s development in reasoning skills, that they can contemplate complex geometric problems. Knowing when students are at the right age to learn something new is the hardest thing to do as a teacher in my opinion. You don’t want to introduce a student to something way advanced too early, in the chance that they can’t figure it out and they end up giving up completely.
                After reading the article I learned that it is crucial while learning geometry that students use physical objects to construct and build models. When students physically replicate a concept they are trying to master, they retain more information than opposed to just working problems out on paper. Also, they are thinking spatially and seeing how objects correlate with one another. In grades 3-5 students should also be able to describe shape properties and label them correctly.
                This weekend I worked on some geometry problems and found myself running into trouble. The questions would talk about shapes with labeled angles and sides that were just too hard to visualize in my head. Following the reading’s advice on their website (website can be found at the bottom of this page), I was able to draw a sketch of the shape to complete the problem.
Journal on using manipulative's in geometry 

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