Student Engagement In and Out of the Classroom

On November 7, 2014, I attended the ETOM Conference at St. Clair Community College in Port Huron, MI. One of the underlying themes of this year conference was student engagement in and out of the classroom. As an instructor who hasn’t taken classes in quite some time, sometimes I forget how difficult it is to be a student in the 21st century. Between the rising cost of college, the changing nature of technology, and the demands at home, it is often a struggle to engage students in the classroom. This conference helped give me a different perspective of how I can look at my classes in a new way. The opening session focused on Open Educational Resources and how the cost of textbooks has an impact on which classes students take and how engaged the students are with the college. The statistics are clear that higher textbook costs lead students to take fewer classes and sometimes not to take any classes...
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See you at #MichMATYC13

As part of MichMATYC's Fall 2013 Conference coming up on Friday, October 4 - Saturday, October 5, I was asked to create gift basket to be used as a raffle prize during the conference.  I gladly agreed to help out by making a donation!  A picture of the basket and a description of what's all inside it is below.  I hope to see you at the conference and good luck winning the raffle prize! Jon Oaks’ Favorite Things Basket This raffle prize is quite unique and includes the following items: Really Useful Boxes 16 Box Organizer Targus Back-Up Battery for Smartphones PNY 16 GB Flash Drive Pentel Twist Erase 9.0 mm Pencils A Gift Certificate for a 2 hour professional development consultation with Jon Oaks* *Offer must be redeemed with Jon Oaks before October 11, 2014.  Jon Oaks is a math instructor at Macomb Community College in Warren, MI, and the Professional Development Coordinator for AMATYC (The American Mathematical Association of Two-Year Colleges).  The topics and format (in-person...
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What I Learned at #BloggyCon13

This weekend I attended my first blogging conference ever: Bloggy Conference 2013. My intent for attending was as follows: I wanted to get tips for becoming a better blogger myself. I am considering having my students write blogs themselves (similar to this idea), as I truly believe that if my students write about what they are learning, then they are more likely to retain the information long-term. I have a few students this semester who are homeschooling their kids at home and have asked me for suggestions for teaching their children mathematics and I heard there were some home school bloggers coming to the conference and I thought that I might be able to network and get some ideas from them. The conference was at Cedar Point, a place that seems to primarily be known for its great Roller coasters. Cedar Point was a great place for the conference. The hospitality was great and I learned that there is so much more to Cedar...
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Wrap-Up of the Fall 2012 Conference Season

Note: This post got lost in e-land and is just now making its way to the Internet. As the end of this semester approaches, I have decided that I need to take a few moments to just get some ideas and thoughts out of my mind from the conferences that I have attended this fall.  Here is a short wrap-up of some of the events that I have attended this semester. This semester I presented at the Michigan Center for Student Success Summit.  My biggest takeaway from this conference is the fact that other colleges are way ahead of my college in terms of their student success initiatives.  I want to look into creating a student success class that is linked with my college’s pre-algebra course.  I think the advantage to having it as a separate, but linked, course instead of simply weaving study skills into the pre-algebra course lies in the fact that it is easier to monitor that the teacher...
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