Wednesday, February 4, 2015


Ferris Wheels Student's created

February 1, 2015

     I was assigned to Mr. Sladkey, who is a high school Trigonometry Math Teacher in Naperville, Illinois.  Mr. Sladkey's most recent blog post was titled " Math is always better when you do more than just WATCH'. 

Mr Sladkey wants students to "be more involved in learning instead of just watching" He feels that students can "learn better when they can manipulate and visualize it". 
     In this blog post, the students were assigned to make a Ferris wheel to help give the students a visual handle on the basic trig ideas. They made their Ferris Wheels out of Pipe Cleaners. The students went through questions and moved the Ferris Wheel to match the questions. Mr. Sladkey said it "went well" and "the test scores were better than last year. "  Mr. Sladky ended his post by commenting that
 " he knows that he he learns better when he can feel it, touch it, manipulate, and visualize it."  
Enclosed below is my reply to Mr. Sladkey's post:

Mr. Sladkey,
     Hi! My name is Janelle Owens. I am student at the University of South Alabama enrolled in EDM310. We are creating a class blog. I will be summarizing my visits, and will publish my comments to my blog on February,8,2015. 
     I really enjoyed reading your blog on "Math is always better when you do more than just WATCH". I agree with you that students can learn better when they: feel it, manipulate it, and visualize it.                
     Especially with math, I feel that students can comprehend the concept better when they use a manipulative and are actively engaged. I plan on using manipulative s to help teach my students. Thank you for sharing. 
Janelle Owens

Class Blog Spot 
Email Janelle Owens,

February 8, 2015

    Since Mr. Sladkey hasn't published anything new in his blog recently, I went back to December 12, 2014. That was the most recent post since the one published in January of this year.  In this post, Mr. Sladkey was working with his high school algebra class on percents. He wanted to "give more meaning to the percents the students were working with". Mr. Sladkey allowed each student to pick something that they liked off of They were able to pick a coupon with a percentage off that they liked. The coupons ranged from 15% to 30% off. The students were then ask to reduce the price by the amount of the coupon. Then they had to take the new price and add the 8% tax to the price. The students were to go to the Padlet website and add the picture of the item they chose and to show all their work. Mr. Sladkey really felt like the takeaways from the assignment was " they learned the material without a lot of problems", " they had a choice in what they wanted to work on", "they were able to recall the facts easier because of this project", "they were engaged and worked diligently", and "they were accountable and could see all their work. "
Enclosed is my reply to Mr. Sladkey's Post:

      I think that this is a really awesome idea. It gets the students involved in giving a meaning to numbers. Sounds like they were really engaged in this activity because they had a choice and they weren't just sitting there trying to work out problems. You really make math come alive! :)
     I feel it is really important for students to be actively engaged. They really seem to learn the material better, when they are actively engaged. I really hope to come up with some great ideas like this when I start teaching. 

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