Throwing the book out

March 6, 2011   

Sorry for the break - hopefully post more regularly now.

First post I wanted to talk about the flexibility allowed when you're teaching in an FE college.

Some of my classes are numeracy classes - as opposed to maths classes and the syllabus for the numeracy classes are more flexible than those of the maths classes. The schedules also mean I have more time to teach in the order I want.

Anyway so the other week I decided to not teach the syllabus explicitly but to teach things that I thought they should learn - how to do addition, subtraction, multiplication and division without a calculator.

The general reception was very good - with some of the students (who I'd assumed would hate it) getting quite frustrated when they didn't get the right answer and when we had fixed the problem they were pleased.

I also used several calculations to introduce fibonacci's sequence and asked the class to use their mobile phones to find out anything they could about it. Although some of the students clearly didn't find this that interesting - there were a few who really got into it. The trick next time will be to see how I can get the rest of class into it.