2004 Conference Proceedings

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MAKING MATHEMATICS MAGICAL

Presenters

Suzanne Feit & Karen Sheehan
IntelliTools, Inc.
1720 Corporate Circle
Petaluma, CA 94954
Phone: 707-773-2000
Fax: 707-773-2001
Email: sfeit@intellitools.com
Email: ksheehan@intellitools.com

In classrooms across the nation you will find tubs of pattern blocks, counting cubes, geoboards, tangrams, dice and spinners. These manipulatives give students a chance to explore and test the mathematical concepts they are learning. The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics has created the Principles and Standards for School Mathematics. Their Web site (www.standards.nctm.org) and documentation delineates five content standards and five processing standards that provide the framework for good mathematics instruction.

IntelliMathics® is an internationally acclaimed mathematics authoring program that used the NCTM guidelines to develop a series of activities that enable students to explore and learn more about the magic of math and how it integrates into everyday life. Using virtual manipulatives gives students more opportunities to test hypotheses and independently check their work using both auditory and visual feedback.

IntelliMathics gives every student the opportunity to explore with on-screen manipulatives similar to those found in most classrooms. This program enables teachers to customize manipulative-based activities for individual users and comes with many sample activities that are ready for immediate classroom use. Additional templates can be used by teachers and students to copy, extend, and create new activities to promote understanding.

The presentation will showcase the five content standards: Number & Operation, Algebra, Geometry, Measurement, Data Analysis, and Probability. Through each of the standards participants will see activities appropriate for students from kindergarten through middle school. Each Content Standard is also correlated with the Principle Standards of Problem Solving, Reasoning and Proof, Communication, Connections and Representations. The Principle Standards reinforce the curriculum content while encouraging students to think and demonstrate their reasoning processes.

Through examples, discussion, and templates the participants will see how the math curriculum is accessible as well as adaptable to any textbook or state prescribed math curriculum. Teachers and students use the technology to explore, create and learn more about how math is integrated into every area of learning. Each activity has been carefully designed to allow users to integrate a wide variety of math manipulatives. Whether the student is studying patterns or fractions, materials can be magically manipulated and adapted. The variety of examples and materials reinforce the math concepts with an endless source of materials.

IntelliMathics also provides many levels of support and feedback for students. Since the answers can be checked using onscreen report boxes or student answer checking, each activity can be presented at a variety of levels. For assessment purposes the answer checking might be initially made accessible to the student and later removed for testing. In addition, each student signs onto the computer and a private student portfolio is used to log and report student progress.

Workshop participants will see the ReadyMade series of activities that combine ease of use with carefully scripted student centered instructions. Participants will also receive a Demo CD that includes demo versions of the products discussed in this workshop.

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