Any topic in mathematics that deals with graphing is usually hard to implement in the classroom. Accurate graphs are difficult to draw freehand. Graphics calculators and computer programs can be used, but it is often difficult to give a demonstration in class with such technology.
This project will use the Internet to help overcome such barriers. A Web page will be developed that will allow students to participate in a number of math labs concerning advanced graphing techniques. This page will supply detailed instructions of each lab, a set of questions that require students to implement the knowledge they have learned from the various labs, and a freeware program to help students plot graphs. The labs are based on the Mathematics 3201 curriculum, but any student who would like to learn more about graphing could access this page.
After completing the various labs and questions on this Web page, students will have met the following learning outcomes in mathematics:
After completing this project, students will have met the following outcomes in Technology Education:
The STELLAR Schools Internet connection is a crucial part of this project. The Internet will allow entire classes with an adequate number of Internet modules to access this project. Without the Internet, students would not have access to the freeware graphing program, which is a vital part of this project. In essence, the Internet provides the teacher with the most effective and efficient medium for such a project.
Please see http://academy.exeter.edu/~rparris/ for details.
The learning outcomes listed above will be evaluated in a number of ways. First, the questions provided at the end of each of the six labs will help to determine if the learning outcomes for each lab have been attained. As well, this project will contain a list of comprehensive questions that will require students to use a combination of outcomes from each lab. Students will also be expected to prepare a presentation on what they have learned from this project.
It is hoped that this project will generate an enthusiasm for mathematics. Unfortunately, many students are not interested in mathematics. A project where technology and the Internet two areas where students today have a great deal of interest are used to enrich the mathematics curriculum should generate enthusiasm for the discipline. If this project generates such excitement, then it is a success.