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News

Current News

In this edition of the News you will find:

Red Square  New eTask Schools

Red Square  Tasks, 3 Lives & Poly Plug

Red Square  Target Range

Red Square  Get to Know a Cameo
     ... Number Game
     ... Cover Up

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  • New eTask Schools

    Welcome to Ohoka School (NZ), Yackandandah Primary School (VIC), Mansfield State High School (QLD), Mundubbera State School (QLD) and Jindabyne Central School (NSW) all which have begun building their own Task Library using the eTask Pack since our previous edition of eNews. We wish you much success in setting up and making use of this resource. We hope to hear from your classrooms in the future.

    Also Mansfield Secondary College (VIC), Oak Park Primary School (VIC) and St. Finn Barr's Primary School (TAS) will all soon receive the Poly Plug they have ordered to begin or extend their set of this flexible, multi-useful resource.

  • Tasks, 3 Lives & Poly Plug

    Tasks have 3 lives (see Link List below):

    1. As designed they are an invitation to two students to become fascinated, captivated and absorbed in a problem, just like a mathematician.

    2. In conjunction with their Task Cameo, they can become the inspiration for a whole class investigation to model how a mathematician works. A critical element that makes a task a task is provision of concrete materials. Developing a whole class investigation implies sufficient equipment for all.

    3. Every task card is the tip of an iceberg. There are always questions to extend the investigation. Every Task Cameo explores extension questions for that task. Based on these, teachers sometimes prepare Investigation Guides to support students to dig into a task. Investigation Guides can be used in both the invitation and whole class lives.

    The Poly Plug & Tasks page lists fifty tasks which can be turned into whole class investigations using Poly Plug. When the eTask Package arrived at Yackandandah they already had Poly Plug so whole class investigations began almost immediately.
    Kelli Bedggood writes:
    I took a photo of my students using Poly Plugs for the Pack Up Your Bears lesson last week. They were completely engrossed and absolutely love using the Poly Plugs. We are in the small room off our classroom where I team teach with a colleague. She was in the other space teaching the Consecutive Sums lesson.

    See Link List below for Poly Plug & Tasks, Pack Up Your Bears and Consecutive Sums.

    I also must tell you that I got the tick of approval from the speech and occupational therapists who work with a child in my class for using Poly Plugs for maths. They were intrigued and very impressed!

    Thanks for sending this through Kelli. There's no doubt your work will inspire others. We look forward to hearing more.

  • Target Range

    Two resources that Calculating Changes members have found particularly useful in engineering 'aha' moments in number are Poly Plug and calculators. Target Range is a calculator activity from the Members section, but during lockdown schooling it was included in the Maths At Home division of Mathematics Centre, where it remains publicly available.

    Two students, one calculator, one operation, which they choose, and a Target Range on the number line, which they also choose. The player who makes the screen display a number in the Target Range ends the round and wins a point. A game is made up of five rounds and for each round the same operation is used throughout - no swapping.

    The game can be used across many primary and secondary year levels because everyone can find an operation and range which give initial success and thus encourages the next challenge. Also those challenges can become quite deep. For example who says the Target Range has to be between whole number values? Decimals? Integers?

    At whichever level it is used the game must be Threaded to encourage the most learning. That means playing it three times a week for 10-15 minutes for at least three weeks.

    See Link List below for the Maths At Home version of this activity and an explanation of Threading.

  • Get to Know a Cameo

    Task 109, Number Game
    Each player is dealt 7 cards and the next card becomes the Target value. Each player has to create a calculation that equals the Target. Players get one point for each card they use. You've heard of that sort of game before - but this one is different.
    • Place value can be used to create numbers in the equation.
    • The score from the number of cards used is doubled for each 3, 4 or 5 digit number used.
    • The score from the number of cards used is also doubled for each division in the equation.
    A great task for helping to develop number skills in a gentle challenge situation.
    In the eTask Package this task is in the 'easy' set because it only needs a pack of cards.

    Task 172, Cover Up
    On their turn a player rolls two dice and adds to get the total. They now use 'red' tiles to cover digits in the row of digits 1 - 9 which are either the total, or pairs which add to give the total. Any tiles left uncovered are added to give the player's score for the round. This means the more tiles that are covered, the smaller the player's score is likely to be. They can't control the dice roll, so the game opens a discussion about what dice rolls are likely to result in the highest score - and what are the chances of those rolls turning up?

    When a player announces their score for a round, another extension is generated by the questions How do you know? and Can you check it another way?. The cameo provides an Investigation Guide that links this aspect to adding series of numbers in more than one way.

    In the eTask Package this task is in the 'easy' set because it only needs dice and tiles, both of which are in most maths storerooms.

Keep smiling,
Doug.
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Link List

  • Did you miss the Previous News?
    If so you missed information about:
    1. Meet A Mathematician
    2. You Go Where You Look
    3. Supporting Curriculum Shift
    4. Predict A Count
    5. Get to Know a Cameo
      ... Crossing The Desert, McMahon's Triangles 2

Did You Know?

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