Saturday, 3 September 2011

Reflections on Session 6

Today was the last session for the Maths Module and an important fact that I will remember is CPA: Concrete, Pictorial and Abstract. I also enjoyed the story “How big is a foot?” by Rolf Myller. This book is a wonderful introduction to measurement and conveys the message of how important it is to have the same standard of measurement or the end results would be very different.  

An interesting lesson that we had today was to Make a container to fill 15 kidney beans. It was surprising that the container needed to fill only 15 beans was so tiny. Hence, from this experience I understand how concrete experiences are important in helping children with estimation too. The Maths Trail is interesting as it gives students opportunities to carry out mathematics learning using the environment. We were assigned the task of finding out how high the 1st floor is from the one below. Our group counted out 4 sections with 16 steps each and the height of each step was 13.5cm. Therefore, the answer was 16 x 4 x 13.5 = 864cm.

Reflections on Session 5

Today we continued with division of fractions in a visual way. I find that this is a very good method of helping  children understand what we mean when we divide fractions or need to make a comparision. I also learnt that there are 3 levels of difficulty in the Primary Maths Curriculum: Knowledge, Comprehend and Application.
We also touched a little about Bloom's Taxonomy which divides educational objectives into three "domains": Cognitive, Affective, and Psychomotor (sometimes loosely described as knowing/head, feeling/heart and doing/hands respectively).

Click for bigger view

One important thing that I learnt today was the external stimulus that teachers subconsiously give to the children while we are teaching them. Upon reflection, it seems that we usually only question the children when they have made a mistake but Dr Yeap has shown the importance of questioning them even if they are right so that they are given opportunities to rationalize their answers and truly understand how they have solved that problem.