Math – Using Different Modalities and Technology

April 7, 2007 at 4:52 pm | Posted in education, elementary, graphic organizers, homework, learning modality, math, schools, teachers, technology in education, third grade | 4 Comments

This year, I came up with a pretty interesting way of teaching the classification of triangles.

math_classify_triangles

This is an example of how I prefer to teach math in my classroom, not that I do it all the time. Though I should. Guilty!
1. First I give the students input on the classification of the triangles using a charted graphic organizer.

2. Then, I break the students into groups of threes according to sizes and have have them make triangles using their bodies and identify the triangles. This activity goes on for about 7-10 minutes. The kids have lots of fun!

3. While they are doing that, I’m taking pictures.

4. We conclude the lesson by reviewing the types of triangles we learned, what are their features, etc.

5. We have guided practice and independent practice in the math workbook.

6. I go home and make this worksheet using the pictures I took. (Well, a similar worksheet as I lost a few things during the transfer to my new computer). A digital camera, a printer, and a computer equipped with Publisher is just wonderful!

7. The next day, they get this for homework as reinforcement along with their regular homework worksheet from the book.

A lesson like this touches on many modalities. The visual learners have the graphic organizers, the kinesthetic learners use their bodies, the social learners are working with their friends, and so on. The lesson is fun and engaging, yet purposeful. The lesson also builds relationships and connections. Children who take home my teacher created worksheet with pictures of themselves and their classmates remember the lesson better than the children who only take home the impersonal commercial worksheet.

Apology: The worksheet you see above is a redux of the original. I lost the original during my move from old to new computer. I also lost the really great pictures that I used in the original, so these pictures don’t clearly show which triangle is isosceles, which triangle is equilateral, etc. But, it gives you an idea of what we did.

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  1. […] Math Using Different Modalities and… […]

  2. What an amazing teaching sequence CT. I love this and I bet your students did too. In a couple of weeks I will be helping my 16 year olds revise various formula pyramids using a “fire-fighter’s lift.” Er, hard to describe, but two kids cross hands to support a third. Each kid has a letter [or even better, their name begins with a letter that is significant]. Thus Steve and Diane support Tim and make a triangle – speed and distance on the bottom of the triangle and time on the top. The kids hands cross to make a multiplication sign etc. – I’ll take some photos for the blog and work out how to explain it by then too :).

  3. Please do explain! This sounds like something I’d like to use (perhaps a variation) for my younger students. I find that moving and working with their body is so important to them!

  4. Luv ur site. i will never forget those teachers i had who encompassed an awareness of the variety “visual learners have the graphic organizers, the kinesthetic learners use their bodies, the social learners…” yes yes yes. & a million dimensions for a child and we’re teaching them like it’s flat, stagnant, rule-based world. mahalo and thanks for ur comment on the “…The 3Rs” I’m working on a new piece about reinventing the modern school system. #1 starts with the problem with the chairs. 🙂 k.i.t. coconut girl wireless


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