Thursday, November 7, 2013


A Blogger's Insight:

Mathematics & The Use of Assistive Technology

Many students struggle in mathematics and end up disliking the subject all together, later in life, because of all the formulas and rules involved.  Math is my favorite subject and many are unsure as to why.  However, I always let my students know, mathematics is the ONLY subject that is constant and does not change.  For the rest of our lives, numbers will always be same numbers, the formulas will always be the same forumlas and the rules will... You guessed it!! They will always be the same rules. 
Unlike mathematics, history is EVER-CHANGING! Our past is the today of tomorrow's generation.  
The English language is another subject that is always changing.  Slang is becoming a widely used language.  For example, when I was in elementary school, "Ain't is NOT a word!" However, not only is it acceptable to use, ain't is NOW in the dictionary! (Mind-boggling)
Unfortunately what makes math so difficult is if you don't use it, your loss it.  We don't go around speaking in formulas, like we do with the English language.  We don't experience math like we do with history and due to this, many find it hard to grasp the concept of math. 
How can we fix this?
When I was in elementary school, I felt the same way many students do about mathematics.  It just didn't make any sense.  The numbers just were not adding up :) (Get it because we are discussing math!) Anyways, the simple worksheet and examples were not enough for me.  Experiencing this, I can see the difficulties other students deal with.  So the essential question is... What can we do to fix this?
Throughout this module, we are going to be discussing mathematics and the use of assistive technologies.   When many think of integrating AT into the mathematics curriculum, they go directly for the aid of a computer or software programs that may help the students.  Teachers forget that AT is not just high-tech.  The use of manipulatives such as counting bears can be just as helpful as a calculator.  The integration of this simple AT provides students with a concrete idea behind the concepts of math.   Keep checking back as we explore how to make math interesting with the use of simple accommodations through AT.

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