Math problem round the world

    Challenged by Darren Draper’s video last year which we shared with our faculty, our math teacher, Bob Witowski took the challenge to try using cell phones constructively in the classroom(his second year at doing this assignment).

As I was driving into work this morning, I overheard on the radio a student calling in to ask the DJ’s to work an algebra problem, and suddenly realized that that it was a student from our high school in Bob’s class.

As soon as I got in, I went to the room and watched as students got text messages and calls from classrooms down the hall, as well as from other states.  His other classes got answers from Iraq, Sydney, London, etc.

answers round the world     

As you might guess, the DJ’s were raving about what a great assignment that was, and how great that a teacher was helping students be enthusiastic about math in such a real way.

Bob charted the calls by farthest away, and closest(some down the hallway), as well as charting them on a map for students.

And the students were clearly engaged, challenged to think outside the box in terms of mining their network, and seeing that math is a shared experience globally.

Thanks to Robin Ellis for answering my text query, also!

8 thoughts on “Math problem round the world

  1. Carolyn , that is an incredibly inspiring story thanks for sharing it with us. Would love to see what his map of where the help came from in the World.

  2. It’s great to see real examples of how students are being asked to use a cellphone in the classroom. It really does mirror Darren’s idea of calling outside the class to gather information. It must have been more than exciting for you to realize it was your local high school student on the radio.

  3. Carolyn, I love hearing stories like this! Thanks for sharing and thanks for your great example.

    Like Sue, I’d also love to see the data.

    Too late?

  4. I love this idea. Agree with Sue, can we see a map? I’m inspired to try something similar in my classroom.

  5. Ditto Sue’s comment… is the map posted somewhere? I plan to share this example with our school administrators who think cell phones are distractions. THANK YOU!

  6. Brilliant stuff- so glad you heard that radio call. How exciting for the sudent- bet it has had an enormous impact on the way he and his class view learning. Great to see you sharing this Carolyn.

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