Focus, focus

Posted on February 16, 2018

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Serendipity!   I’m trying to do that minimalist fraction stuff and this fraction lesson is linked to on twitter.   Yes, it’s Illustrative Math (IM) and I love this promotion of **going back** and doing stuff from earlier because that’s what they need.   This linked to a lesson on fraction number lines which is exactly what the quiz I’m supplementing asks for.

The videos in Modumath  follow a nice progression; “placing fractions on the number line” starts w/ thirds.   I wish it included 3/3 and 4/4 — and more connections.   That IM fraction lesson includes: “This activity was extremely helpful because of the amount of vocabulary review and repetition I was able to build in for each problem in the string”   … basically, this guy carefully, thoroughly grounded the students in the meanings of fractions in multiple representations.   (This is part of what I love about the Illustrative Math approach — and so wish they saw the value in going even deeper into this for students who need it, even later on…  hoping that somehow its OER nature will make that possible and it will happen).

… our adults need this kind of instruction, too — not accelerated reviews of symbol manipulation.   Yesterday was a little too busy in here to hang out at the NROC webinar about “scaling up” developmental math, and I’ll try to get to the recording today.  A previous one described lessons that *did* include the conceptual end but I cringed at seeing that roughly half the references for this were the noxious article about developmental ed being a “bridge to nowhere” (I mention it in this post – thought there was another but I”m not finding it) — the one where they *brag* that accelerating *could* work (maybe) for “as many as half” of students.   The rest need to be steered in other directions.   ( Demographic trends?  3 guesses and the first 2 don’t count…)   No, zero, zilch, zip nada talk about how to teach folks who are struggling with math.

Cool stuff this a.m. on twitter too but … it’s 9:45 and I really want to get the fraction skeleton version done… Oh, yes, and on FB Chris Woodin says he’s working on a software project to get his whole-to-part stuff out to mainstream.  I fervently hope it’s not typical small-scale (“why I don’t try to actually make software”) stuff like… Connect… I can only fantasize that oh, it would be open source and some organizations would figure out a way to tap the knowledge that’s out here to build it up and scale it out…

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