Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Final word to start again...

The goals of my activity are:
  • Get the students to reflect in the process by thinking on how to write directions/instructions in Plain English. 
  • Connect Language and Math. 
  • Authentic audience feedback - Not just from me. 
The activity plan is (in grey fonts are the ideas :
MY SIDE - Example:
- Write in Plain English how to solve the following operation.
1/4 + 5/4 - 2/9
- Write in Plain English how, in general, you can add and subtract unlike fractions.
-Proofread your assigned short pieces. Make sure your comments and changes are highlighted in a different color.
- Try to follow the instructions to solve the exercise-Try not to use your own math knowledge.

I connected to the College Immersion Program Class - Cynthia Casey

-The goal for the CLIP students, a link where math is related to language.

- CLIP Students will give feedback to my MAT096 students, who are already in College. This way students will feel the value of their work to other at a “higher” level.
- To kick-off the activity I visited their class, talked about how I did start liking Maths and what I do. Also I explain the importance and rationale for the activity, and the value of their work. In that day I presented our website to start explaining the dynamic of the activity. 

I used Wikispaces. It is easy to work with and to add members. As any other Wiki-tool available, there are not any “Math Writing” capabilities. As a result the setup process of our site was very long a tedious.
- Cyndi also did some work during their computer lab hour.
- There is an issue with Wikispaces when several people are working at the same time on the same page. Each contributor has to define a “heading” so text does not get mixed and entangled. This happened to us, and I had to spend some time re-deconstructing what was there. 

The process of writing in their own terms how to solve a problem in math. To help with this part, I gave instructions on first solving the problem on paper and using mathematical symbols, and then describing the steps of the solution.

- Students not completing the work thoroughly, or just not being detailed enough.
- Synchronizing the two courses in such a short time was a challenge that I am not sure it has been successful or not yet. The connection is still in it early stages.
- Since I started my connection late in the semester, I had to randomly assigned only to problems for student and do not overload and overwhelm them with work at the end of the semester. I would like to change that for next term. 
Ideas from others @ Comm.2.0that used in my connection:
- Porsha & Melissa: use questions from the CUNY final practice.
- Use REACT from Wynne: Relate, Experience, Act, Communicate, Apply, Transfer.
I would like start a connection or just the same activity earlier in the semester as a “routine” weekly assignment.

It took me too long to decide which platform to use and how to organize the whole assignment.

Fortunately I heard about a better Web 2.0 tool that allows easy math writing and also it seems it works magic with the students. This is Piazza.com. Unfortunately, I discovered too late when the whole site was already set up. I am planning to use it in my classes anyway, traditional, hybrid, and with connections or not. It seems a great find! 

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