Sometimes a couple of ideas come together to form a little flash of inspiration. I’ve had a Pinterest account for a while but not really used it personally or thought of using it in education. A blog post from Mark Warner got me thinking though. Pinterest is a social site that encourages users to create a virtual pinboard of images and videos taken from across the web.
I’ve been a great admirer of Dan Meyer’s efforts to drag Maths teaching into the 21st Century and the real world. He’s been campaigning with ingenuity against typical textbook Maths problems. Particularly their over abstraction and removal of any space for thinking creatively about problems and making links between the real world and the maths thats being taught.
Dan’s TedX Talk is essential viewing:
His latest post sums up a lot of these thoughts well:
Original image ripe for mathematical questioning and modeling.
Textbook example cutting out the important process above.
Dan’s work in this area started with his What Can You Do With This? (WCYDWT) series. A photo or video provided on his blog for readers to suggest Mathematical teaching ideas, inspirations, questions. He’s more recently been churning out 3 Act Tasks. These start with a piece of media (normally video) ripe for mathematical abstraction and modeling and some expected lines of questioning from students (Act 1). Act 2 involves some carefully crafted questions and perhaps an additional layer of information to enable investigation. Act 3 provides a solution. Have a look through them, there’s some great stuff there.
So put these two bloggers ideas together and what do we have? A Pinterest board of Mathematical inspiration:
Pinterest Mathematics Inspiration
I hope this can be a great way to crowd source some rich mathematical resources. If we can build this into a library of visually arresting media surrounded by great questions and potential problems and solutions I’ll be delighted.
If you’d like a Pinterest invite then please let me know in the comments, equally if you’d like to be added as a contributor to the board then I’d be delighted to oblige.