I find it interesting how different words in our language can completely change the meaning of something. This week in math we discussed creating lessons and how using the word “understands” in our objective does not make sense. How can one measure what the student really understands? Think about it, you know how to do the equation but do you know why the equation works, where it came from, and what it really means. The idea of replacing the work understands with something else is a good thought. It can completely change your goal as a teacher as to what you want your students to learn. This makes me think about how we use our language while teaching math skills. Sometimes, its our job to find different words and examples to help a student grasp the concept on which we are trying to explain to them.
Math doesn’t always have to be all about answering problems on the board and on paper. It can also include fun activities where the students don’t often realize that they are learning in the process. For example, the teacher can use origami to create different shapes through the folds and discuss the shapes with the students. Depending on the age and level of the students it can go as far as explaining why they know that what they have made is a square and how they know all sides are equivalent and all angles are right angles. However, if you are working with a younger group, the students can talk about what the shapes are that they have made on the paper.