Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Tool #7

Since I teach in the Virtual High School, I don't have another teacher I can collaborate with on this project. I am the only math teacher. However, it is possible that I could have students from anywhere in Texas in the same "classroom". Last year I had students in one "classroom" from 5 different school districts across Texas.  Every course in the virtual high school has synchronous discussions - usually through Elluminate - and asynchronous discussions which are built into the course through the Angel LMS. This is one example of an asynchronous:

In discussions, please remember to always use good Netiquette, especially in your grammar, spelling, and “tone of voice.”
Please read all of this assignment before completing it.
PART 1) First Post: 
  • identify 2 items from your daily life where you really like the way they look (form) or function;
  • identify 2 items that you DO NOT like the way their form or function.
  • Aspects to consider: 
    • The 4 items must be from 4 different major categories (e.g. furniture, apparel (clothing, accessories), containers, buildings/rooms, vehicles, electronics).  You cannot just pick 4 clothing items.
    • Try to choose items that are unusual or uncommon.
    • When you choose items make sure your like/dislike relates to their geometry (e.g. “This chair is comfortable to sit in because of the angle of its back” instead of “This chair is comfortable because its material is soft” or “Its color is ugly”).
    • Examine the geometry of each item (not other characteristics like color, reputation, cost, image, marketing, customer service, etc.). Use as descriptive terms as possible to explain what you like about their form or function.
PART 2) Responses:
  • Read what other students have posted
  • respond to at least five of them.
  • EXPLAIN why you agree or disagree with their conclusions.
  • ASK at least one good follow-up question.
  • Remember, you are examining the geometry of the item, NOT its color, reputation, cost, image, marketing, customer service, etc.

In most of the synchronous discussions, readings from the course are discussed among the students, questions about the material are answered by other students if possible - if not, by the teacher and we talk about what's coming next. I try to only moderate these discussions - only providing information if necessary.

My students also have projects that are completed in groups where the members of the group may be in different cities or different schools within the same city. They post these projects for other students to view and comment on.

I did look at all the high school math projects in class2class and found that the one that might have been of interest (project birthday) had a broken link and is probably no longer going. I found with most of the links provided the projects were based in elementary curriculum. 

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