Strand A, Coding, and the new Ontario Mathematics Curriculum

Where's the joy? Creating something, and sharing it, is an exciting and motivating endeavour. With the new 2020 Ontario Mathematics Curriculum now guiding mathematics in classrooms across Ontario, I think there is renewed excitement and potential to encourage creative learning with students, especially with coding activities. Unfortunately, after accessing and reading through a long list... Continue Reading →

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Mathland Actually

If you look for it, I've got a sneaky feeling you'll find that Mathland actually is all around. Introduction I have spent a fair amount of time thinking about a question Seymour Papert asks in the following video (and in many other ways in a various books and papers): "How can we create a mathland?... Continue Reading →

Exporting micro:bit sensor data

[This is a reblog of a post I wrote at scratchmathland.com] The BBC micro:bit contains various sensors for measuring temperature, light intensity, direction, movement, and so on. These sensors might be valuable in a project in which measurement data collected by one micro:bit (the sensor) can be communicated to another micro:bit (the receiver) and displayed... Continue Reading →

Scratch 3.0 is Here!

At long last, the new version of Scratch is now live at scratch.mit.edu. It launched officially on January 2, 2019. Scratch 3 is a complete redesign of not only the editor but also the code 'under the hood' that runs Scratch. The advantage is that Scratch 3 now works on virtually any device that is connected... Continue Reading →

Summer Learning 2018

Don't get me wrong. In the summer, I think it is essential for teachers to relax, unplug, take a break, spend tons of time with family and/or friends, and enjoy some sunny summer weather. The summer break makes us fresher in the fall and reconnects us to other parts of our lives, friends, family and... Continue Reading →

Text-based vs. Block-based coding

Scratch 3.0 and the same code in javascript This blog post is more of a curation project than a blog post. I have put in one place various statements, beliefs, arguments, for or against, the use of block-based programming/coding with students. Some are clearly pro 'text-based,' some pro 'block-based,' while others are mixed and point... Continue Reading →

Scratch vs. Swift Playgrounds

[Note: The post below was updated in July, 2019 (originally written May, 2018). This article might be a useful read if you are teacher considering Scratch vs Swift Playgrounds or are caught up in discussions / arguments about the two. I think that juxtaposing these two coding environments helps reveal the distinction between children "learning... Continue Reading →

Professional consumption vs. creation

It's effortless to hop onto social media, whatever social media you interact with (for me it's primarily Twitter, Medium, WordPress, and news sources), and read through stories and ideas created by other people. In fact, I 'found' myself the other day after work having spent about 90 minutes straight on social media. But many other... Continue Reading →

Rethinking Empowerment

No, I am not rethinking "empowerment" in the sense of is it a good or bad thing? But after reading a very thought provoking essay called  Empowerwashing Education by Benjamin Doxtdator @doxtdatorb I am rethinking how I have used the term and what the term means and implies. The first thing that jumped at me as I started... Continue Reading →

Play and Learning

Why is it that the older children get, the less play seems to be connected with learning? Personally, I think the two concepts are nearly synonymous. Sometimes I read things that imply that play is great for young children but not so great for older, more serious students. Often, the notion is that all children... Continue Reading →

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