27 December, 2013
Volume 18 No. 52
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In This Issue

Math Forum Online PD Courses

Math Blogging Retrospectus 2013

2013 in Numbers


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PoW taking place: math problem-solving moment of the week

"The final strategy I saw was algebra. Once again, more than one equation could be used to find the solution to this problem algebraically! I even saw a third way to solve the problem algebraically.... Thanks for sending in such different strategies, and variations within strategies, again this week. I loved reading in your algebraic solutions, how each equation related to the story. It was like a mini-birthday party for me, I had such fun reading your work!"
- Max, commenting on the Pre-Algebra's Latest Solution

Math Blogging Retrospectus 2013


A Fort Collins math coach has compiled his annual compendium of "what made the math blogosphere so great in 2013."

Organized into commentary, tasks, and stories, Geoff Krall's retrospectus includes

  • Two-Column Proofs that Two-Column Proofs are Terrible (Ben Orlin)
  • My Three Cents on the Common Core (Fawn Nguyen)
  • What Does it Mean to Understand Mathematics? (Robert Kaplinsky)
  • Blogging > Twitter (Michael Pershan)
  • Direct Instruction v. Inquiry Learning, Round Eleventy Million (Dan Meyer)
  • 26 Questions You Can Ask Instead (Max Ray)
  • One Way to Introduce Ratios So They Make Sense to Students (Nicora Placa)
  • Coupon Composition: Just in Time for the Holidays (Scott Keltner)
  • When Desmos Fails (Patrick Honner)
  • An Encouraging Thought (Timon Piccini)
  • #DuckFace (John Mahlstedt)

Available for download in an editable .docx version, this compilation began with Krall's solicitation to "peers who happened to find their way to my doorstep" at the beginning of the month. He dedicates his own blog, begun two years ago, to "brainstorming interesting and dynamic math problems and projects," with emphasis on Project/Problem Based Learning (PBL) models of instruction:


Now taking place: math education conversation of the day

"I have a website for sharing fifth grade EngageNY module resources. I have some homework keys up for module 2. One of the members of the site said they plan to upload a complete set of answer keys soon. Hope that helps."
- Steve, posted to the middle school (grades 5-8) discussion group of the Association of Math Teachers of New York State

2013 in Numbers


Two thousand and thirteen was the first year since 1987 with all four digits different, but for "the science that mattered" this past year, the journal Nature has posted "soundbites, statistics and summaries" covering everything from the tar pitch drop to the Chelyabinsk meteorite.

Quartz, a self-described "digitally native news outlet" for business professionals, has collected data from Intel, Facebook, and other sources to generate a "snapshot of one minute on the internet, today and in 2012":


It links to a spreadsheet by International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the United Nations specialized agency for information and communication technologies, that provides a geographic breakdown of the past eight year's growth (or decline) in categories such as

  • fixed telephone subscriptions
  • mobile cellular subscriptions
  • mobile broadband subscriptions
  • fixed broadband subscriptions
  • households with a computer
  • households with Internet access at home



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