The purpose of this tool for the field is to give you and your students access to two online resources available for supplementing math instruction. Links to additional resources are provided in the “Links for More Information” section of this unit.
- Locate a computer with Internet access. (Note: If you have another device with Internet connection, such as an iPad or smart phone, you may be able to use that.)
- Explore and reflect on the virtual resources available through the following websites:
- Select a manipulative and spend about 5-10 minutes playing around with the manipulative.
What concept is the manipulative designed to teach?
Do you think students would like the manipulative?
Would it be effective in helping them learn the concept?
Not every student learns well from manipulatives, and even for the ones who do, some manipulatives work better than others.
Can you think of a student for whom these virtual manipulatives would be useful?
- Explore and reflect on the Khan Academy site.
Go to the Khan Academy homepage at https://www.khanacademy.org/.
Click on the drop-down menu by the word “Courses” at the top of the page. Select the grade level most appropriate for your work or interest.
You will see a screen with several different main topics. Select any main topic, which will take you to a set of subtopics. The subtopics with a triangle (i.e., play button) beside them are videos and the subtopics beside them are practice exercises.
Watch one video and do one set of practice exercises.
How effective do you think the Khan site’s approach to teaching would be for students?
How is this website different from the virtual manipulatives website you selected?
Some people have commented that sites focused on virtual manipulatives teach concepts and the Khan site teaches procedures. Both concepts and procedures are important for learning math. Just like with the sites featuring virtual manipulatives, not all students will respond well to Khan-style videos and exercises.
Can you think of a student who would learn well using these resource materials?