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Ditching Tests for Desmos

Last Friday, we took a massive leap in what we hope is a forward direction. The Maths coordinator (@Jason_Loke) and I gave our students a summative assessment task that could potentially change the way we assess students in maths. In South Australia, we have two main types of assessment in mathematics: Folio Tasks (Mathematical Investigations) and…

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Solving Quadratics Using Misconceptions

8:33am I’ve just finished a conversation with a colleague to frantically finish/start planning how the hell I was going to teach solving quadratics to my Year 10s and 11s at 8.40am. I posted this photo on Twitter the night before the lesson, probably while procrastinating from actually planning the next morning’s maths lesson: This is…

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Learning Log Laws Like A (MT)BoSs

Recently, I have been utilising Open Middle problems more and more. What I particularly like about these problems is the sense of challenge that drives students to find a possible answer. After using many awesome problems directly from the Open Middle website, I decided to have a go at writing my own and use these develop…

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Exponents & Logarithms the MTBoS way

A new semester meant a fresh start to try some new things in my maths classroom that would hopefully turn the dial of cognitive demand to appropriately awesome. Here’s what I did with my clean slate: I read The Classroom Chef These guys (Matt Vaudrey & John Stevens) hit the nail on the head repetitively without…

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Making Maths More Appetising

Every time I teach something, I want to teach it again straight away. Why? Because on the second time around, the teachable moments are far more obvious and, perhaps, more frequent. As a compulsive dad-joke teller (often seen as a pre-requisite for maths teachers), I will do anything to maintain the attention of the young…

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Reports… Why is it so much work for the Teachers?

Reports… What would you want your report to look like? Reports, the time of year when we, as teachers, have to flawlessly write comments that are less descriptive, less critical, and less meaningful than the conversations we have with our students about their actual progress or overall performance in our classes. What is more important…