Monday, November 9, 2015

Vanillapen and Math War.

I downloaded a few poster making apps for my iPad so I could play with them for my class.  I created the poster to the left on the app called Vanillapen.  The free version comes with enough things to create many a poster but if you want full access to everything, it is a $4.99 upgrade.

I was able to select a basic blank canvas, add color, add the type and choose the color for the words, add fancy things to frame the type and much more.  It was rather easy to use.  Once you are done with the poster, it can easily be shared via facebook, twitter, Instagram or It can  be saved on the camera roll so it could be turned in via dropbox or google.

It also has the ability to take pictures and incorporate these photos into the posters.  This allows students to create drawings or use examples from real life so as to add a real world element to posters. 

Now for a way to get students to practice. is offering free worksheets to go with a math version of War so students can practice addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division.  In high school, we may not use the addition or subtraction version but for some of our lower performing students this could easily be a good way to sneak practice in that is fun and that they are willing to do.   I think this idea with a bit of work could be extended to finding midpoints, distance, equation of lines and so many other things.  Thank you to the Math Education google plus group for this.  Take advantage of it and use it.

I believe that if we have to sneak practice in via card games or other ways, we should.  The student populations have changed so much over the past 20 to 40 years and I just heard that students have an average attention span of no more than 10 min.  So what does that mean for teachers?  We need to get creative with how we teach the subject and this includes integrating technology.