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Included this week: This week's Global Math webinar details and a website to check out! edited by Ashli Black
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This Week at Global Math...


Problem-Based Learning:


Clarifying Misconceptions and Understanding Differences

With 20 years of PBL teaching experience, Carmel Schettino can speak to the many ways that teachers have adapted various student-centered pedagogies and problem-based curricula to a form what they called problem-based learning. In the past 5-8 years PBL has seen a rise in popularity and use in many disciplines, but the research surrounding the learning that happens in the mathematics classroom is not catching up with anecdotal support for the teaching method. In this session, we'll discuss differences between Problem-Based (PBL), Project-Based (PjBL and Inquiry-Based Learning (IBL) from a researcher's standpoint, as well as what is known about PBL in terms of student learning in mathematics.
https://twitter.com/schettinopbl
Last week's recording on Lesson Study In Action can be viewed here

Summer's-End Blogging

Inspiring Tweetups

My greatest inspiration for the start of this school year came from a tweetup. This past week I was lucky enough to meet with my friends and fellow #MtBoS-ers Wendy Menard (@wmukluk) and Jasmine Walker (@jaz_math) in a little Quebec border town called St. Armand.  We had a wonderful time yakking, eating dessert, watching a church get demolished, eating cheese, and of course, talking about #TMC15, which neither Wendy nor I had attended, to our great despair. (We vowed to correct this most egregious situation at TMC16!) In the meantime, I read both of their blogs, because they are my friends, and because they are awesome math teachers.
 Jasmine did two great summaries of her TMC15 experience at her blog here and here.  I definitely want to try out  Glenn Waddell’s high fives, although adapting that to the online environment will be tricky. Still, I just love this way of communicating without words.
Wendy wrote a series of posts about her experience at PCMI, (which sounds similar to the TMC experience) culminating in The Anxiety of Influence, with which I could definitely identify.
Apparently,  at TMC 15.  Lisa Henry said “It’s the community, stupid.” It absolutely and utterly is.

Written by Audrey McLaren (@a_mcsquared)

Making It Stick

Julie Reulbach's (@jreulbach) ultimate goal, which resonates with many of us, is for her students to make connections in math, to learn conceptually not procedurally, and learn that the best approach to math is to explore, struggle, and learn.  Instead of telling that to students, Julie will be guiding students to research that for themselves by listening to Jo Boaler on the Good and Bad of Math Education and reading excerpts from Make It Stick, The Science of Successful Learning by Peter C. Brown and then having conversations with each other about the key take aways.  The book is about how people learn and how we can make it stick.  What I love the most about this activity is that ultimately students create an actionable goal for themselves. Read about her first day in detail here.  And for even moredetails check out the planning page that has tons of resources like the excerpts of the book, a student brochure courtesy of Meg Craig, and great conversations. Shout out to Meg Craig @mathymeg07 Lynne Yarrows @numerzgal Rachel Rosales @rachelrosales, @mel, Beth Ferguson @algebrasfriend, Robin Mathews @romathio, Jessica @algebrainiac1, and Anne P. Bayna @paomaths who have jumped in on the planning for this activity here. If you want to know more (or are just excited to click on even more links) you can also listen in to this past week's GMD webinar about first day activities. 

Written by Sahar Katri (@KhatriMath)

Why Not Hit The Ground Running?


For many of us in the southeast region, school has begun again.  Many of us have taken a “hit the ground running approach”, implementing ideas we gathered over the summer.  Some of us attend professional learning sessions such as #TMC and are exploring ideas with colleagues.  @JoeSchwartz experience at Twitter Math Camp inspired him to bring the excitement back to Jersey.  He shares how colleagues were immersed in a 3-act task and activities from Estimation 180 in his recent blog post.
Making his blogging debut, @DrBrianLack expresses how he “hit the ground running” with 5th grade students.  Introducing the idea of algebraic thinking through this video, Brian encourages the students to wonder how Benjamin is determining the answer quite quickly.  Immediately, students are engaged and thinking about algebra in a non-threatening way.  Throughout his post, Brian highlights the SMPs emphasized through this thinking process 5th graders were able to complete.  A thinking process which sets the foundation for success as students move from arithmetic thinking to algebraic thinking.  Great first post Brian!

Written by Jenise Sexton (@MrsJeniseSexton)

Problem of the week

Microsoft wants to quickly build a 100 story tower and they can invest virtually unlimited resources.

The tower is built with 1-story blocks that interlock on the top and bottom like legos.

Using special lifters, the tower is built by putting one stack of blocks on top of another stack.  The lifters takes one week, regardless of the number of blocks in each stack, and two lifters can't work on the same stack.

What is the shortest number of weeks it would take to build Microsoft’s tower?

 
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