I truly believe learning mathematics can be a fun experience for children of all ages. It is up to us, the teachers, to present math as an interesting application. The addition of computers into our ever-changing world has given us an important tool, which can assist us on our journey to teach math in new fun and interesting ways. The Program Geometer’s Sketchpad© is one of many mathematic programs we as teachers can use to better help kids understand different geometric concepts. I would like to use Geometer’s Sketchpad© in my classroom to help teach my students about circles and the different algorithms that go along with them. Having the students create circles on the program helps them better visual a concept and helps with the learning process in general. It allows them to get away from their desks for a while and explore both computing and mathematics. It actually makes learning math an enjoyable and exciting process.
I want the children to see how an algorithm is made. Creating a circle on sketchpad, finding its center, and then finding the radius will help them better visualize the process. After proving several small algorithms, I hope my students understand algorithms are not just created through trial and error. An algorithm is a systematic procedure used to accomplish an operation. I hope visualizing the algorithmic process helps them better retain the knowledge as well. I also hope the students become more comfortable using this program so we can use it in future geometry problems.
The activities I have chosen to do on Geometer’s Sketchpad© addresses several of the National Standards for Mathematics. Out of the 13 mathematics standards for grades 5-8, the lessons I have proposed addresses roughly 9 of them: Standard (1) Mathematics and Problem solving, Standard (2) Mathematics as Communication, Standard (3) Mathematics as Reasoning, Standard (4) Mathematical Connections, Standard (6) Number Systems and Number Theory, Standard (7) Computation and Estimation, Standard (9) Algebra, Standard (12) Geometry, Standard (13) Measurement (NCTM Standards, 1989).
"Radius, Diameter, Circumference, Pi, Geometer's Sketchpad, and You!,"
The Mathematics Enthusiast: Vol. 1
, Article 3.
Available at: http://scholarworks.umt.edu/tme/vol1/iss1/3