Does Memorizing Multiplication Tables Hurt More Than Help?


North American Multiplication Algorithm 12 x 9 = 108

Knowing Your Times Tables Is Nice. But Is It Necessary for Success? As you may have heard in the Globe and Mail or in my recent post, Ontario Education Minister, Liz Sandals recently tossed a comment into the media about the need for students to know their math facts: That’s actually a great homework assignment: Learn your multiplication tables. Liz Sandals - Ontario Minister of Educa...


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Great Read – Mindset: The New Psychology of Success


Minset - The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck

Professional Reading Review Over the past year, I had heard quite a bit of "buzz" about Carol Dweck's research on Mindset and how it can affect student learning and achievement. A few months ago, I was at a Ministry of Education SIM Session in London, Ontario and we watched a taped presentation from Carol Dweck that really caught my attention. Prior to watching this video, I had never given m...


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Ontario Education Minister Makes Math Matters Worse


Ontario Education Minister Makes Math Matters Worse

A couple days ago, I received a tweet from a good colleague and friend, @cowpernicus about comments made by Ontario Education Minister, Liz Sandals: @MathletePearce Ontario Ed Minister wants basics: ‘Learn your multiplication tables’ http://t.co/18hfd8DPRV "a great homework assignment."— James Cowper (@Cowpernicus) April 5, 2014 In the Globe and Mail Article, Ontario Ed...


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Book Review: The 4 Hour Work Week


The Four Hour Work Week - Timothy Ferriss

The 4-Hour Work Week: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich As mentioned in a recent post, I am using my time in the car and at the gym listening to audiobooks through Audible.com. I'm just two weeks in and I'm halfway through my second audiobook. That's about one and a half more books than I have read in the past year! Sadly, I don't think that is an exaggeration. However, after...


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Making Connections in Proportional Reasoning


MakingConnectionsInProportionalReasoning

How to Apply Proportional Reasoning Concepts to Other Strands Through my work with the Middle Years Collaborative Inquiry Project with teams of intermediate math teachers from 29 different schools, it is clear that teaching in Ontario elementary classrooms can be tough. Teaching multiple subjects throughout the day, daily interruptions, and pressure to have adequate assessment data from ea...


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How Audible Can Help You Grow Professionally Without Sacrificing Time


How Audible Can Help You Grow Professionally Without Sacraficing Time

Ask family or friends and you'll learn quickly that I am definitely not a Bookworm by any means. Much of my professional learning and growth comes from reading the online articles, blogs, and journals that Tweeps in my professional learning network share with me via social media. While I have no plans to change my online reading habits, I have been exploring other options to learn more about...


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Using Algebra Tiles to Better Communicate Algebraically


Identifying Key Algebraic Terms and Concepts

Picture the Math Before You Do The Math The second unit in my MPM1D Grade 9 Academic Math Course is typically the portion of the course students struggle with the most and coincidentally the most boring to teach. Why do students struggle with this unit? Well, it deals with communicating math algebraically. Why is it boring to teach? Well, it deals with communicating math algebraically...


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Complex Can Be Simple


Simple Multiplication With Arrays 4 x 6 is 24 Apples

How Simple Scenarios Lead to Complex Math Just a few hours ago, I was mentioned in a Tweet by @i2Learn with a link to a picture of how math is all around us: https://twitter.com/i2Learn/status/444145090379128834 At first glance, the photo looks like a great opportunity for introducing the basic concept of arrays and multiplication. However, since I have been using algebra tiles quite ext...


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Using Algebra Tiles to Collect Like Terms and Simplify


Explaining Algebra Tiles

For some, collecting like terms and simplifying expressions isn't too hard a task. For others, it can be quite difficult if they are depending on memorizing the rules without any real context to go along with it. Students may be asking questions similar to these when determining what is a like term and how to simplify the expression: Do I add the numbers in front of the variable AND the ...


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Math is Like a Trip to Your Buddy’s Cottage


Math Is Like A Trip To Your Buddys Cottage

Recently, I've been on an Algebra Tile kick to try and address an urgent student learning need I see in my classroom and across the district. Even students with higher marks in math don't necessarily understand what it is they are actually doing; simply memorizing procedure and replacing the numbers from the example copied in class is usually enough to get by. Shortcuts Before Taking The L...


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