Sunday, March 23, 2008

Odds and Evens - Week of 3-24-08

We've already had a couple of submissions for our Mystery Mathematician. I selected him for several reasons - see if you can intuit some of these!

  • Take a look at the 29th edition of the Carnival of Mathematics over at Quomodocumque, an interesting 'non-blog' written by a professional mathematician who has a unique perspective on the role of blogging in math research. This edition of the Carnival is weighted in favor of research mathematics, not that there's anything wrong with that! Enjoy the quality and variety of excellent posts. I particularly like the name of the host's web site. Now whenever one of my adolescents utters the classic 'whatever', I can reply "quomodocumque!"
  • One of our Mystery Math solvers shared a fascinating link to Dr. Hung-Hsi Wu's web site. Dr. Wu from the U. of California, Berkeley, has been a major voice in the counter-reform movement in math education. I particularly encourage readers to scroll down the page until you reach his 2006 paper on Professional Development: The Hard Work of Learning Mathematics. I may have more to say about this.
  • Now that the National Math Panel has released its final report, entitled Foundations for Success, it behooves me to comment, considering all of my past correspondences with the Panel. There have already been reactions on several leading blogs including Edspresso and Joanne Jacobs.
  • Still working on developing some rudimentary math casts using Mimio technology and SnapZ Pro X image capture software. I just don't have enough hours in the day!
  • I'm also planning a review of Explore Learning, an excellent web-based set of interactive simulations for math and science. I'm in the process of using some of their Gizmos and I've received helpful background information directly from the company. I'm sure many of you are familiar with this product and will add your thoughts.
  • I'm working on an in-depth investigation relevant to the Patterns, Functions, Algebra strand in most standards. It starts out as a simple winding traversal through a 3-column number matrix, then onto 5 columns and perhaps beyond. If you've ever counted on the fingers of one hand, then you know how easy this is: 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9. Uh oh, I only have 9 fingers...

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