Wednesday, February 13, 2008

inspirational throw-away

How's that saying go? One man's detritus is another man's gem? Something like that, right?

But here's the point:

Over at Dan Meyer's tome, Christian Long posted a comment in response to the short film, People In Order:

My Hon Eng II (10th graders) classes will ALL be watching this video in the coming days.

They’ll be challenged with writing the ‘ad copy’ that will entice film festival goers to come see this wacky little idea-concept. Oh, and they’ll have to use this week’s vocab list — all from Act I of Macbeth, BTW — to help lift their text off of the generic floor.

Over at Ken Rodoff's sent email folder, Ken composed an email for an Algebra teacher in his building. After Ken moved past the metaphor and aesthetic of the film, he wondered if the video could work in a math classroom:
Here's a 3 minute video of people, ages 1 - 100, in order, banging on a drum.

It is a lot more dynamic than the above description.

Part of me wonders if it would fit in a math class.

Kids predict how many beats, total.
Kids predict which person, by age, will hit the drum the most.
Kids watch video.
Kids discuss the findings.
Kids could graph age / beats.
Kids could come up with some conclusions/findings.

Kids messin' around with numbers, probability, basic math.
What started out as distraction and menagerie turned out to jump-start some educational percolation.

Are we trying too hard to make something out of, as Dan labels it, 'show and tell'?

Or are we demonstrating the never settle-ness of innovative teaching?

1 comment:

Dan said...

I dunno, man. Show and tell is kinda sacred space. A moment where I get to demonstrate that, hey, I just play a math teacher on t.v.; in real life I enjoy cool stuff just like you.

I hesitate to eff with that dynamic.