math 2010
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The workshop started off with an icebreaker activity to learn how well the students could problem solve by having the students arrange themselves by the month and day of their birthday. Darian then gave the students vague instructions to draw a house, without telling them what they were drawing. Once the students finished drawing, some had vastly different houses than others due to different interpretations of the instructions that were given. This activity was repeated again with a different set of instructions that were very specific. With this set of instructions, all of the houses looked almost the same. This activity was used to teach the students what an algorithm was. The students then solved a word problem about how a rumor was spread to demonstrate an application of algorithms that the students would be able to relate to.

After the break, Darian used the Shape Sorter applet on Interactivate to teach the students about Venn Diagrams. The students then experimented with the Shape Sorter applet on the “Guess the Rule” setting to try to find an algorithm that would make their work the most efficient. After the students experimented with the Shape Sorter applet for a while, they moved on to using the Tables and Chairs applet to find the perimeter of a shape. The Tables and Chairs applet helped students find an algorithm for finding the perimeter of an object. They then used the Shape Explorer applet to find the area and perimeter of irregular shapes. Darian and Jennifer tried to help the students think of algorithms to find the area and perimeter more quickly. The final applet they used was the Surface Area and Volume applet to find surface area and volume of three-dimensional objects by modeling the objects. They ended the workshop by measuring the length and width of a rectangle on the floor with yard sticks and then calculated the perimeter and area of the rectangle on the board.