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This is taken from Passport to Mathematics, McDougal-Littel, 1999, Pages 2,3

CHAPTER PROJECT

Exhibiting a Class Collection

PROJECT DESCRIPTION
Museums display collections of ojbects. Many museums also have educational exhibits and hand-on activities. Plan a class museum. Your museum will display collections brought in by members of your class. It will also have a booth with puzzles and activities. To organize your plans, you will use the Topics on the next page.

(I am going to skip down past "Talking It Over", which is an oral discussion time about museums the students have visited and how collections are displayed at museums.)

GETTING STARTED

• Materials Needed: notebook or journal; colored pencils or markers; posterboard

These are places throughout the chapter where you will work on your project.

TOPICS
1.2 Make a table of the collections that will be in your museum. p. 11
1.3 Investigate ways to display the collections. p. 15
1.4 Design an informative display for the museum. p. 20
1.6 Analyze the income and the number of visitors you will have. p. 32
1.7 Create a number puzzle for the activity booth. p. 37
1.9 Design a logic puzzle to identify the collections. p. 47

(These numbers indicate the lesson numbers. Lesson 2 is numbered 1.2, etc.)

CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT

The Chapter 1 Project may be completed by students working in groups of three or four. Some of the project exercises may be completed by students working independently. Students should work as a group on the exercises that involve collecting data to decide what collections to display and how to display them. Finalizing the plans for the class museum should likewise be a group effort.

PORTFOLIO OPPORTUNITIES

Students should be encouraged to include each Chapter Project in a portfolio. . . Chapter Projects can add greatly to students interests, skills, knowledge, and abilities. . .

CONCLUDING THE PROJECT

Have groups present the booklet that contains their plan for a class museum to the class.

The teacher in me is saying "Aaaahhhhhhhhhh" right now!

Notice that in all but Lessons 1.1 and 1.8, students are working on this Museum Project.

For example, in Lesson 2(1.2) on Making Tables, students are given this assignment as Problem 11:

EXPLORATION AND EXTENSION(to be done in portfolio)

11. BUILDING YOUR PROJECT Survey your class to find out what collections each person has. Organize your data in a table. Classify the collections into categories such as toys and games, things from nature, and stamps and coins. Explain which categories you chose and why.

Alas, one more table these students are to make in Lesson 2! But the teacher is reminded in the sidebar of the T.E.:

Problem Solving Organizing data into tables requires students to use analytical thinking. . . Students then use their tables to answer questions about the data.

Another example of working on the Museum Project, this one from Lesson 3(1.3) on Making a List,

EXPLORATION AND EXTENTION (to be done in portfolio)

18. BUILDING YOUR PROJECT Use your results from the Building Your Project in Lesson 1.2 on page 11. Suppose that you can fit three collections on each table and two collections on each desk. What is the minimum number of tables and desks that you will need to display all the collections? Is it possible to fill each of the tables and desks that you use? Explain.

Who stayed away at night thinking this up?

I really do want students to be able to gather information from tables and lists (in addition to the graphs and diagrams, which will also be presented in Chapter 1). There are much more efficient uses of Math classroom time, or for that matter, Math homework time, for learning how to get that information.

How much paper and pencil time do you think this project is using? But remember it's OK for the constructivists' project-making activities to use all the paper and pencil time they want. But it's not OK for a traditionalist teacher to use paper and pencil on drill, review of facts, multiple practices of steps to an algorithm, review of procedures, etc.

Let's all remember: THIS IS COMING FROM THE MATH BOOK.

Oh, but you should see the students' Math books! They have bright colored pictures of groups of students looking at collections, examining and organizing the collections. Of course the students all have big smiles to show how much 'fun' this Museum Project will be. What students wouldn't want to do this project after looking at the pictures! Who wouldn't want to make Math class this much 'fun'. So let's be sure not to have any drills or facts review in Chapter 1. It might get students off on the wrong foot (thinking Math is dull and boring).

There are great ways to have 'fun' in math in the classroom, most of them 1-5 minutes. I'll try to share in a later post some of the more effective ones that I have found.

Again, hopefully there are many wise teachers who will see these activities for what they are and will chose to use time on valuable "teaching" and "instruction" of math concepts and the review of the specific steps for solving problems.

-- InterestedTeacher - 04 Jul 2005

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This brings to mind a PowerPoint presentation put together by Barbara Reyes of the Show Me Center, an implementation center funded by NSF-EHR. To see it, go to http://www.mth.msu.edu/cmp/SupportFiles/CMPUsers.ppt.

In it, she talks about how wonderful NSF funded programs are. Passport to Mathematics is NOT an NSF funded program, but I think it would be interesting to have a PowerPoint? similar to Barbara's with examples from these texts that are being used throughout the US. Even more fascinating would be to find out how many schools are using the texts, but publishers keep those data top secret.

-- BarryGarelick - 04 Jul 2005

Barry,

A little off-topic here, Instapundit has linked to an education article that has you quoted in it. It's rather humorous. I didn't know if you were aware of it.

-- SusanS - 04 Jul 2005

Here's the article.

-- CatherineJohnson - 04 Jul 2005

I'm aware of it. Bas Braams asked a bunch of us to send to Linda Seebach, the journalist who wrote the article, any advice we would give to Bennet on selecting a Chief Academic Officer (CAO). Actually, what I wrote her was longer but she got the sound bite she needed. Since I lack a PhD? or other worthy credential, I was just listed by name, so I'll take suggestions for a title I can call myself for future quotes. "Analyst at USEPA" doesn't cut it. "Bon vivant" might be better.

If you want to see the full text of what was submitted to Linda Seebach, go to www.nychold.com, and then scroll down a bit to the listing of latest news. The first four items are what we submitted Bas Braams Wayne Bishop, Mike McKeown?, and me).

-- BarryGarelick - 04 Jul 2005

The great thing about having a Ph.D. IN FILM STUDIES is that--hey--it's still a Ph.D.

Sigh.

-- CatherineJohnson - 04 Jul 2005

Unfortunately true. (The comment about PhDs?). PhD?'s in math education are quite different than PhD?'s in math. The general public is unaware of such difference, however.

-- BarryGarelick - 05 Jul 2005

Boy, no kidding.

I'll take a Ph.D. in FILM over a Ph.D. in math education ANY DAY.

Actually, I shouldn't say that, because I'm hoping to corrall the close friend of Christopher's teacher (who has a Ph.D. in math ed) to write for us.....(!)

A Ph.D. in film studies is actually incredibly hard to get; it's the same thing as a Ph.D. in comp lit.

You're talking to a person who READ and UNDERLINED and WRESTLED DOWN TO THE MAT every single word of Umberto Eco's THEORY OF SEMIOTICS.

-- CatherineJohnson - 06 Jul 2005

Why?

-- CatherineJohnson - 06 Jul 2005

Ph.D.s in math ed and math are really different, it's true. But sometimes I think I could have done a lot more good in the world if I'd gotten the PhD? in math ed.

However, Math ed is (obviously) a much more political field, and I probably would have been run out of town without any PhD? at all.

-- CarolynJohnston - 14 Jul 2005

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