Helpful Links (circa 2005)

This list of links was complied somewhere around 2005.  Ugh.  That seems like a long time ago.  I'm a lot better than this now. Statistics Links Oakland University Mathematics DepartmentA Guide to Statistical SoftwareFree Statistical SoftwareThe R Project for Statistical ComputingResources for Graduate Students Mathematics LinksFigure This! Math Challenges for FamiliesNational Council of Teachers of MathematicsBirthdays of Famous MathematiciansMath DictionaryDERIVEHot Math Homework HelpQuick MathMathematics Help CentralS.O.S. – CalculusThe Math Forum Education LinksTeacher Files – Clip ArtInformation on Block SchedulingMeasurement ConverterMetric Conversion TableRubriStarDiscovery SchoolBreakthrough CollaborativeTeach with MoviesTop 10 Inspirational Movies for TeachersUnited Teachers of Flint Other Cool Math Related LinksMath2.orgMath.comAplusmath.comGomath.comGPA CalculatorOperations Research Excel Add-Ins Julia Set GeneratorMandelbrot Movie Maker ...
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Videos on Multiplying Fractions

A couple of students in my on-line classes have been asking questions about multiplying fractions.  Should you simplify before or after multiplying?  How should you simplify?  By cross-canceling directly, or by a prime factorization and cross-canceling combo?  Here are some videos I have made to help clarify the situation. View on screencast.com » View on screencast.com » ...
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Thoughts on Assigning Homework

Proponents of assigning homework probably believe that students need regular practice outside of class.  While I'm totally not against students practicing math outside of class, I don't believe that we should give homework simply so that the students can practice.  Let me clarify: I'm not saying that students do not need the practice at all.  And I do believe that some parts of mathematics need to be practiced until learned.  If a student needs to practice, that's fine.  However, I am against giving homework simply for this purpose.  I sincerely believe that not all students benefit from this method of drill, drill, drill until you get it correct, or you memorize enough to be able to pass the upcoming test.  That's not learning.  Homework should part of the learning experience. My stance on homework is that the quality of the homework problems matters more than the quantity of the homework problems.   And I believe that this statement applies...
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New Slope Game

I hope you enjoy this game!  I would love to have any feedback if you decide to use it. Slope game Other Slope Resources Applets 1.  Interactive Slope Applet - Although I ran out of time to actually use this with my own class, this is a wonderful resource that lets students click and drag points such that when the line between the point changes, the calculation of the slope of the line also changes on the screen as well.  Very useful! 2.  Slope-Intercept Equation Applet - This appears to be the exact same applet I introduced to you a few weeks ago in the Geogebra Tutorial video.  It's a very simple resource that allows students to visualize the slope-intercept equation of a line by using sliders to change the slope and y-intercept. Worksheets 1.  Pete Falzone's Understanding Slope and Y-Intercepts 1 2.  Pete Falzone's Understanding Slope and Y-Intercepts 3 3.  Pete Falzone's Graphing and Using Slope and Y-Intercepts 1...
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MindMap for Basic Mathematics Project

I learned a lot from the class that I took on Online Learning and Teaching this semester.  We used the book Understanding by Design by Wiggins and McTighe.  This course has revolutionized the entire way that I think about teaching and learning.  As of late, when planning lessons, I keep finding myself needing to list the big idea, the misconceptions, and the essential questions.  I've also found this to be a good way to organize my own learning.  This book is truly a great read. As part of this course, we had to design a demo course using the ideas in the book.  To present my course, I decided to use a mindmap, rather than a PowerPoint presentation.  I thought I would post it here as just a little sample of everything that I have been working so hard to do this semester. http://www.mindomo.com/view?m=ed9c47bcafeb408495c2e52561fae659 ...
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Thoughts on Preparing Students for College

This is my response to this post in The Chronicle of Higher Education. It is my understanding that there is still a major problem with equality in this country and that many students who go to inner-city or rural schools may not have the same opportunities as students who live in affluent suburban neighborhoods.  I completely understand that.  I completely agree that anyone who wants a chance at college should be given the opportunity to have a chance at college.  There are many arguments that can be made that college is not for everyone.  However, again, I sincerely believe that anyone who wants a shot at college should be given the opportunity. But my problem with this article is that it seems to point out the fact that college is such a new opportunity for 'black males and other underrepresented groups'.  What I think people tend to forget is that college is a new opportunity for any incoming...
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Thoughts on Critical Thinking in Mathematics

This is my response to this comment by a reader of The New York Times. First of all, as a math instructor, I'm a little offended that this reader has called our education system pathetic without actually giving a solution to the problem.  Although, I understand where the reader is coming from in terms of needing a solid foundation in order to do higher mathematics, I want to share a share a story with you based on what I have learned from working with students whose first experience with mathematics was outside of the United States. Last semester I had a student in my basic mathematics class who tried as hard as she could in the class.  She could do most of the arithmetic mentally, or by hand.  She was especially good at calculating fractions mentally because she followed a memorized formula for doing so.  She was used to being taught the formulas upfront and then shown some...
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