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Using the Group work and Discussion Practices of the Algebra Project To Engage Students In Math DACTM / MDSTA 2013 Peter Benson, Woodrow Wilson Fellow,

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Presentation on theme: "Using the Group work and Discussion Practices of the Algebra Project To Engage Students In Math DACTM / MDSTA 2013 Peter Benson, Woodrow Wilson Fellow,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Using the Group work and Discussion Practices of the Algebra Project To Engage Students In Math DACTM / MDSTA 2013 Peter Benson, Woodrow Wilson Fellow, FlexTech High School, Brighton, Kathlyen Harrison, Woodrow Wilson Fellow, Northwest High School, Jackson, Charles Dershimer, Director Woodrow Wilson Fellowship Program, UM

2 Overview What is the Algebra Project? Teaching context What the Algebra Project looked like for us Lessons learned How we are applying it today

3 What is the Algebra Project? Founded by Bob Moses to specifically address achievement among the poor, low-achieving Experiential Curriculum from daily handout(s) Work in groups of 3-4 Emphasis on inquiry, probing questions Collaborative and individual work Public presentation of thinking “Are you going to take yourself seriously?”

4 Teaching context Ypsilanti High School Algebra, pre-calculus, physics, calculus Algebra students taking algebra for second time Pre-calculus and calculus students were, on average, higher achieving 1 mentor teacher (4 years experience with AP), two teaching interns

5 First project: Setting the stage

6 Make-Do

7

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9 Two months later…

10 Billiards

11

12 Billiards experience

13 Classroom

14 Personal lessons learned It takes time to get buy in from students: “when are you going to start teaching us?” Older, high achieving students more resistant at outset, but most embraced it later in year Start introducing Algebra Project approach to students earlier? Apply across the curriculum?

15 FlexTech High School teaching math, physics, and computer science math: ALEKS-based, dispersed progress, poor fit for collaboration, good fit for projects physics: online labs, experiential, student choice collaborative work difficult to manage for upper level students with flexible schedules work published online computer science: closest fit to Algebra Project

16 Publishing their work

17 Why this is useful and needed Students ALWAYS have knowledge gaps and NEVER enough time to reteach what is needed Range of gaps and abilities Increased one on one and small group support from staff and peers Challenging for all through the use of questioning practices Allows for self reflection and individualized help

18 Benefits Retention Higher Order Thinking Developing reflection skills Knowing they can do it Develops their thinking patterns and helps and provides a new way of thinking and learning. Foster academic communication and peer support

19 What I Took Away Students understand things at different times and shouldn’t be penalized. They need to feel successful in math, which is a difficult feeling for them to get. Showing that you care about them as students and people. They will improve if you give them the chance to do so and the opportunity to show you. Display student work, they take pride in it.

20 Northwest Rough Start Adaptations~ every class is different Successes in student understanding Demonstration of learning and growth Academic and personal growth of students “I wish every math class could be taught this way starting in elementary school.” ~ Student

21 Room Set-Up

22 Demonstration of Learning


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