Use Appropriate Tools Strategically – The Teacher

10 Jun

I have sent students questions like the following many times.

Screen Shot 2014-06-10 at 10.36.19 AM

And my students almost always get this question correct.

A few years ago, when I tested a similar question on a no-calculator, no-multiple choice part of their test, I was surprised to find several students with the following answer:


The next day in class, without mentioning their responses, I sent my students the following Quick Poll.

Screen Shot 2014-06-10 at 10.37.10 AM

As students start typing their response into the Quick Poll, it graphs the equation.

Screen Shot 2014-06-10 at 10.37.58 AM Screen Shot 2014-06-10 at 10.38.06 AM Screen Shot 2014-06-10 at 10.38.38 AM

Several of them tried to enter the equation the way they had written it on their test – and then wondered why the function was being translated down 1 instead of to the right 3 and up 2.

They learned the lesson I needed them to learn by correcting their own work.

Screen Shot 2014-06-10 at 10.39.25 AM

And I am learning to use appropriate tools strategically along with formative assessment better every day. The y= question with the “Include a Graph preview” option gives my students the opportunity to attend to precision while they are learning – and then they are better able to attend to precision with whatever type of function I might give them on the no calculator part of a summative assessment.

And so the journey to continue learning the appropriate use of technology continues …


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One response to “Use Appropriate Tools Strategically – The Teacher

  1. Travis

    June 10, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    If you did not have the graph preview, then you would have included y=(x^2-3)+2 as a choice on the next year’s QPoll. However, the genius of GPreview is the immediate formative feedback.
    Going the other direction (giving the graph shape and writing the equation) is also helpful.
    And if we did not have Nav tech, then we would use mini white board tech. In either case, we still use the available/appropriate tech strategically.
    Now to read the perspective of the student


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