YMAW Exploring Playgrounds, Grades 5-8 (Resource Package): A Context for Multiplication of Fractions

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Overview

In their series of professional books for teachers, Young Mathematicians at Work, Catherine Twomey Fosnot and Maarten Dolk described Mathematics in the City, an innovative project where teachers helped young children construct a deep understanding of number and operation in a math-workshop environment. Now they and two colleagues from the project have developed a flexible, video-based, digital context for inquiry into the teaching and learning of mathematics that will change how professional development is conducted.

Designed for you, the workshop leader or college instructor, the Exploring Playgrounds Resource Package enables your in- or preservice teachers to not only watch but interact with video that depicts classroom teachers as they listen to, question, and interpret students' thinking; develop connections between mathematical ideas and strategies; and, ultimately, develop vibrant mathematical communities in their classrooms.

The Resource Package includes three valuable components:

  • A completely interactive CD-ROM, where your workshop participants can explore-independently or under your guidance-videos of instruction and assessment; sample children's work over time to analyze development; take and save notes on what they see; capture specific frames or footage; and then email their captured video clips and notes to other members of your professional development workshop. The context of the classroom will be at the fingertips of your participants for exploration.
  • A Professional Development Overview Manual that provides general advice on how you can use the CD-ROM for staff development.
  • A Facilitator's Guide whose field-tested content is specific to the CD-ROM and includes helpful suggestions for using video clips and student examples on the CD to design rich professional development experiences; sample dialogue to help you anticipate what your participants might say; tips for facilitating discussions among teachers; and descriptions of the mathematical ideas being explored.

In Exploring Playgrounds, your workshop participants will observe seventh graders as they construct some of the big ideas related to multiplying fractions, making connections between the commutative property of multiplication and the relationship between fractional parts and a changing whole. By studying the use of carefully crafted problems designed both to generate a range of solution strategies and help children generalize strategies from one problem to all fractions, teachers will discover what a valuable tool real-life contexts are for building a solid foundation in mathematics.

System Requirements for CD-ROM

Windows/PC
Pentium II Processor
266MHz (or higher)
Windows 98 (or higher)
64 MB RAM (more recommended)
SVGA Color Display (or better)
4x CD-ROM Drive (or faster)
Sound Card
16-bit Flash(TM) Player and Acrobat Reader(R)
Quicktime 6.0 (or higher)

MacIntosh
PowerPC Processor
G3/233MHz (or higher)
System 9.2 or 10.2 (or higher)
64 MB RAM (more recommended)
SVGA Color Display (or better)
4x CD-ROM Drive (or faster)
Sound Card
16-bit Flash(TM) Player and Acrobat Reader(R)
Quicktime 6.0 (or higher)
*Please note CD-ROM is not compatible with Mac OS X 10.7

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780325009049
  • Publisher: Heinemann
  • Publication date: 8/24/2006
  • Series: Young Mathematicians at Work Series
  • Edition description: PACKAGE
  • Pages: 88
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.36 (d)

Meet the Author

Antonia Cameron is a Master Coach for K-6 Mathematics at Metamorphosis. Former co-director of Mathematics in the City, a national center for professional development at The City College of New York, Toni is coauthor of numerous facilitator guides and Contexts for Learning unit books. She is a nationally known mathematics "coaching coach" and speaker on professional development practices.

Maarten Dolk is a researcher and developer at the Freudenthal Institute for science and mathematics education in the Netherlands. He is involved in the development and research of in-service and multimedia in-service materials for teachers, staff developers, and teacher educators in a number of countries. He has been a collaborating partner in Mathematics in the City since its inception and is co-author of the first three books in the Young Mathematicians at Work series.

Catherine Twomey Fosnot is the Founding Director of Mathematics in the City and former Professor of Education at The City College of the City of New York. She has twice received the "best writing" award from AERA's Constructivist SIG and she was the recipient of the "young scholar" award by Educational Communication and Technology Journal. She is the lead author of the Contexts for Learning Mathematics series as well as the Young Mathematicians at Work series.

Sherrin B. Hersch is a co-principal investigator at The City College of the City of New York, overseeing mathematics grants funded by several national agencies. She frequently has led workshops using the CD-ROMs developed for the Resource Package, and has field tested the materials. Her deep interest in learning and teaching was shaped by her years working with children as a primary classroom teacher.

Lynn D. Tarlow is a professor of mathematics education at The City College of New York. She has extensive experience in teaching mathematics to children at all levels and in creating professional development programs for teachers, coaches, and supervisors. She is currently directing the Mathematics in the City professional development middle school initiative - Building Collaborative Communities of Practice. Her research interests lie in the study of students' development of meaningful mathematical ideas and the teacher's role in empowering them.

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