Monday, 25 May 2020

Professional Reading #3

Share three pieces of academic or professional reading and explain how they and other sources helped your form hypotheses about aspects of teaching that might contribute to current patterns of learning. (WFRC#7)

Professional Reading #3:
What's the Big Deal about Vocabulary?
By: Pamela J. Dunston and Andrew M. Tyminski

When reading this article, I found myself wondering what techniques I use to teach mathematical terminology to my students that allow the opportunity for them to expand their abstract reasoning and move beyond basic operational problem solving.

Some important points to note from the article are:

  • Combining conceptual approach to mathematics vocabulary with research based literacy strategies can improve student maths learning. 
  • The article provided three ELA approaches, and I have decided to give two of the approaches a chance in my class.
  • It was once again reiterated that students and some teacher's see mathematical language as a completely foreign language (or second language) to learn. 
3 Approaches:
  • FRAYER MODEL: Students use two topic lists to compare the qualities of the items being discussed. This model is one that I believe our students would have difficulty using on a daily basis.
  • FOUR SQUARE: It is important for teachers to limit the number of new words students are working with to 5 or less.
    • 1. Teacher provides the pronunciation and spelling of the new word.  It is written in the top left square of the document.
    • 2. Teacher explains the meaning of the term, and students write their definition in the bottom left square
    • 3. Students write their "lightbulb word" in the top right square. This is the word or phrase that students think of (or associate) the mathematical term with
    • 4. Students draw a picture or figure to remind them of the definition (or they can write an equation/Illustration)
  • FEATURE ANALYSIS: Illustrates relationships between terms/concepts.
    • Features of the topic word are listed across the top of the page and concepts are found along the left side. 
    • Allows students to form connective views of the characteristics and properties and make conjectures regarding the relationships between various definitions.
I really believe that I will attempt to use the Four Square and Feature Analysis approaches in the upcoming terms as we go back to our regular classroom learning circumstances. 

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