Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Teacher Resources/Mathematics
Learning Math: Number and Operations

A video- and Web-based course for K-8 teachers; 12 half-hour video programs (10 per grade band), course guide, and Web site; graduate credit available

Now on DVD

Learning Math: Number and Operations, a video- and Web-based course for elementary and middle school teachers examines the three main categories in the Number and Operations strand of Principles and Standards of School Mathematics (NCTM) — understanding numbers, representations, relationships, and number systems; the meanings of operations and relationships among those operations; and reasonable estimation and fluent computation. The course covers the real number system, place value, the behavior of zero and infinity, meanings and models of basic operations, percentages, and modeling operations with fractions, often with the aid of concrete, physical models that enhance understanding. It also examines Basic Number Theory topics, such as factors and multiples, as well as divisibility tests, at both practical and abstract levels. Accordingly, parts of the Number and Operations course may be more challenging than other Learning Math courses.

The course consists of 10 approximately two-and-a-half-hour sessions, each with a half hour of video programming, problem-solving activities provided online and in a print guide, and interactive activities and demonstrations on the Web. The 10th session (choose video program 10, 11, or 12, depending on your grade level) explores ways to apply the concepts of number and operations you've learned in your own classroom.

Produced by WGBH Educational Foundation. 2003.

Closed Caption     ISBN: 1-57680-678-2

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Learning Math: Geometry
Learning Math: Data Analysis, Statistics, and Probability
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Math Discipline Page
Individual Program Descriptions

VODVideo 1. What Is a Number System?
Understand the nature of the real number system, the elements and operations that make up the system, and some of the rules that govern the operations. Examine a finite number system that follows some (but not all) of the same rules, and then compare this system to the real number system. Use a number line to classify the numbers we use, and examine how the numbers and operations relate to one another. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 2. Number Sets, Infinity, and Zero
Continue examining the number line and the relationships among sets of numbers that make up the real number system. Explore which operations and properties hold true for each of the sets. Consider the magnitude of these infinite sets and discover that infinity comes in more than one size. Examine place value and the significance of zero in a place value system. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 3. Place Value
Look at place value systems based on numbers other than 10. Examine the base two numbers and learn uses for base two numbers in computers. Explore exponents and relate them to logarithms. Examine the use of scientific notation to represent numbers with very large or very small magnitude. Interpret whole numbers, common fractions, and decimals in base four. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 4. Meanings and Models for Operations
Examine the operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division and their relationships to whole numbers. Work with area models for multiplication and division. Explore the use of two-color chips to model operations with positive and negative numbers. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 5. Divisibility Tests and Factors
Explore number theory topics. Analyze Alpha math problems and discuss how they help with the conceptual understanding of operations. Examine various divisibility tests to see how and why they work. Begin examining factors and multiples. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 6. Number Theory
Examine visual methods for finding least common multiples and greatest common factors, including Venn diagram models and area models. Explore prime numbers. Learn to locate prime numbers on a number grid and to determine whether very large numbers are prime. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 7. Fractions and Decimals
Extend your understanding of fractions and decimals. Examine terminating and non-terminating decimals. Explore ways to predict the number of decimal places in a terminating decimal and the period of a non-terminating decimal. Examine which fractions terminate and which repeat as decimals, and why all rational numbers must fall into one of these categories. Explore methods to convert decimals to fractions and vice versa. Use benchmarks and intuitive methods to order fractions. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 8. Rational Numbers and Proportional Reasoning
Begin examining rational numbers. Explore a model for computations with fractions. Analyze proportional reasoning and the difference between absolute and relative thinking. Explore ways to represent proportional relationships and the resulting operations with ratios. Examine how ratios can represent either part-part or part-whole comparisons, depending on how you define the unit, and explore how this affects their behavior in computations. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 9. Fractions, Percents, and Ratios
Continue exploring rational numbers, working with an area model for multiplication and division with fractions, and examining operations with decimals. Explore percents and the relationships among representations using fractions, decimals, and percents. Examine benchmarks for understanding percents, especially percents less than 10 and greater than 100. Consider ways to use an elastic model, an area model, and other models to discuss percents. Explore some ratios that occur in nature. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 10. Classroom Case Studies, K-2
Watch this program in the 10th session for K-2 teachers. Explore how the concepts developed in this course can be applied through case studies of K-2 teachers (former course participants) who have adapted their new knowledge to their classrooms. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 11. Classroom Case Studies, 3-5
Watch this program in the 10th session for grade 3-5 teachers. Explore how the concepts developed in this course can be applied through case studies of grade 3-5 teachers (former course participants) who have adapted their new knowledge to their classrooms. Go to this unit.

VODVideo 12. Classroom Case Studies, 6-8
Watch this program in the 10th session for grade 6-8 teachers. Explore how the concepts developed in this course can be applied through case studies of grade 6-8 teachers (former course participants) who have adapted their new knowledge to their classrooms. Go to this unit.


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