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Monday, January 18, 2016

Math Lit 2e update and group quizzes

I've been a bit MIA on the blog for the past several months as Heather and I are knee deep in the creation of the second edition of Math Lit. It will be coming out this year. A blog with more info on it will be coming soon. We are very excited about it and what we can provide instructors and students in math literacy pathways courses.

If you are beginning your semester with a pathways course, consider using group quizzes if you haven't before. I was a skeptic about the idea of students assessing together, outside of projects, because of the fear of grade inflation. That has never been an issue because I don't quiz that often in groups, just once per unit, and my quizzes aren't a large part of the student's overall grade. I have many quizzes in MyMathLab that are individual.

So why use group quizzes?

Without question, I see students interact and engage during group quizzes than any other time in class. The reasons are simple: I give them hard problems where they need each other and points are attached, which automatically increases a student's level of concern. Because of these two components, students will really talk to each other, debate, and listen. There has been a great give and take. It's always really interesting and fun to watch and it reminds me why I believe in pathways courses so much: because they work. They expose students to meaningful math in ways they are not used to and they give students the opportunity to dig into problems instead of just rushing through a myriad of skills. There are many skills, of course, in pathways courses but they're not the focus. Problem solving, critical thinking, and creating 21st century learners are the goals. Group quizzes are one tool to encourage all of these.

If you're looking for good problems for group quizzes, consider using homework problems from Math Lit and/or the quizzes available in the Instructor Resource Manual of the Instructor Resource Center in the MyMathLab course for Math Lit.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

AMATYC presentation slides

Here are the slides from today's presentation on using Excel in a pathways course, like Math Literacy for College Students.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Math Lit: In the Classroom webinar recording

Here is the recording of the webinar I did last week about using Math Lit in the classroom. Focus problems, a typical day, MyMathLab, and group work are among several topics covered in the webinar.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

New Orleans bound - AMATYC 2015

Next week is the AMATYC conference in New Orleans, Louisiana. I'll be speaking with Heather Foes on using spreadsheets in a pathways class.  Here is the information. I hope to see you there!

Using Excel to Build Understanding in a Pathways Course                              

Pathways courses use rich, realistic problems as opportunities to apply concepts and improve problem-solving skills. Instead of focusing exclusively on algebraic techniques, Excel spreadsheets can be used to develop deeper understanding and highlight alternate perspectives. Sample activities and problems for this approach will be shared in the session.

Thursday, November 19, 10:20 - 11:10 am

Friday, October 30, 2015

Another webinar coming soon

Next week I'll be doing a follow-up webinar to one I did recently on the Math Lit course. This webinar will be about classroom-level issues.

Math Lit: In the Classroom

Thursday 11/5/15 | 4:00 PM
Eastern Time
Are you planning to teach a pathways course? This session will delve into the nuts and bolts of using Math Lit in the classroom. We will discuss topics that include the cycle structure of the book, how a lesson works, how book homework and MyMathLab work together, focus problem projects, features of the MyMathLab course, and instructor resources. Suggestions for teaching with groups will also be shared.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Math Lit: A Closer Look webinar recording

Here is the recording of the webinar I did earlier this week. Once you click the link, you'll get to an online form that asks for information. You can fill it out or leave it blank and click submit.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Math Lit Webinar This Week

This Wed I'll be doing a webinar about pathways and the Math Lit course. It will be recorded and posted to my blog at a later date.

Math Literacy for College Students (MLCS), part of the AMATYC’s New Life and Carnegie’s Quantway initiatives, creates a new experience and alternate pathway in developmental math. It offers an innovative and accelerated way to redesign that uses integrated contextual content and technology to prepare a developmental student for a statistics or liberal arts math class. This session will describe the course, content, and approach, as well as data from Rock Valley College’s four year pilot and implementation. 

When: October 7, 2015, 4pm EST
Registration and Information: Click Here to Learn More and Register