This engaging lesson plan introduces Newton’s Nemesis No. 1. The plan contains universal elements of lessons that can be used for a variety of formats, include those recommended by EdTPA. Aligned to Common Core Math Standards, the engaging activities that are modified for all learners encourage working with models and mathematical writing about fraction division […]
This guide has activities and prompts for math journals that illuminate all the math in Newton’s Nemesis and how it is tied to the Common Core Standards. Experienced teachers will be able use the comic book series to teach and lessons from math history!
In our zest to have children learn math deeply and creatively, professional math educators sometimes give the impression that algorithms are the enemy. In my opinion, nothing could be further from the truth.
I recently stumbled upon the work of Robert Siegler, a professor of cognitive psychology at Carnegie Mellon University who is working with several colleagues to determine why fraction arithmetic is so difficult. Of course, all the researchers he’s worked with should also be acknowledged (see below), but this is one of those times you read […]
Peck and Matassa (2016) recently published a research paper that reinforced why fraction division and multiplication is such an important topic for children to master. We often hear that understanding fractions is a gateway to learning algebra, and these authors offered some pretty compelling reasons why that’s the case. Before we get to the study, […]
Today, I uploaded a new video on YouTube that condenses all the research behind my math mystery comic book series, Newton’s Nemesis. It’s fast paced and 7-minutes long. Every time I need to learn something (like my recent adventure changing a burnt out headlight in my car), I search for a video on YouTube. That […]
There are many intriguing ways fraction division can be interpreted. The most common are measurement and partitive, but there are more. No wonder it’s so challenging to teach!
As I developed the story for Newton’s Nemesis, I wanted the underlying narrative to reinforce growth mindset, or more specifically, mathematical mindset. Jo Boaler, a professor of mathematics education at Stanford University, authored a wonderful book entitled Mathematical Mindset that encourages a culture shift in classrooms that rewards children for exploring mathematics. If children are […]
In Newton’s Nemesis, I wanted to provide a nice variety of visual and mental images of division with both whole numbers and fractions. The idea was to help children connect how operations have the same underlying meaning. When children connect the structural elements of whole number division and fraction division, they are reasoning by creating […]
In Newton’s Nemesis, I created Theo’s precocious little sister Leah not only because I was like that to my older sister (yes, I regret that a little bit now) but because I wanted to connect division with whole numbers and fractions. There is some evidence that the difficulties with fraction division are rooted in understanding division…