CT + Math undergraduate course

WHAT

  • Developing a new computational thinking + math undergraduate course designed for future mathematics teachers and which will build on their compulsory first-year and second-year MICA (Mathematics Integrated with Computers and Applications) courses offered at Brock University.
  • This course builds on a sequel of two programming-based math courses for pure and applied mathematical investigations, called Mathematics Integrated with Computers and Applications (MICA) I-II.
  • The main course learning objective was set to further prospective mathematics teachers’ learning of basic methods of mathematical modeling and simulations and of experimental mathematics, and to develop an understanding of computational thinking in mathematics (learning).

WHO

Collaborator

  • Eric Muller, Brock University.

WHERE

  • Brock Department of Mathematics and Statistics

 

OUTCOMES

  • The course was designed and taught in Winter 2017 with an enrolment of 21 prospective mathematics teachers.
  • The course engaged students through project assignments in the four different computational practices, as described by Weintrop et al. (2016), and had them reflect, a posteriori, on their learning experience in the context of computational thinking in/for mathematics learning. It also included an introduction to programming in Scratch through a fifth project assignment. Similar to the MICA I-II courses, this course concluded with an original final project. For this new course for future teachers, the original projects had to be created in Scratch and designed to support the learning of a high school mathematics concept as a math computer game, an interactive math story, or a guided math task.
  • Two examples of student original final Scratch projects, an interactive math adventure (Grade 10 trigonometry) and a math game (Grade 10 factoring), are published online.

DISSEMINATION

  • Mulder, A., & Buteau, C. (2017). Needles, pi(e) and coding. In Math+Code’Zine, 2 (3), May 2017.
  • Teacher workshop: Khan, S., & Buteau, C. (2017). Coding icebreaker: In/for math learning. Workshop for K-8 teachers :
    • presented by Buteau, C. & Khan, S. at the OAME Golden Section Spring 2017 meeting, Brock University, St.Catharines (Canada), April 2017.
    • presented by Buteau, C. & Marshall, N. at the OAME 2017 Annual Congress, Kingston (Canada), May 2017.