Thursday, June 30, 2016

Fifteen: Building Positive Math Teams and Mindsets

Jo Boaler's book, Mathematical Mindsets, is a great resource for teaching math well. In her book, Boaler discusses the value of explicit efforts to teach and coach teamwork. I will follow her lead in this regard by teaching students the attributes of optimal teamwork as well as instituting team roles with regard to some of our math projects, particularly projects that teach math with a STEAM (science, tech, engineering, art, and math) focus.

To spur a conversation about team and what matters, I'll show one of my favorite teamwork videos:

I'll also use other resources that I've collected to inspire positive teamwork.

I'll likely include the attributes Boaler uses to describe mathematicians, mathematical thinking, and math study, attributes included in the presentation below. It's possible that students and I will create online or real-time signage as teams to post and refer to throughout the year to remind us of these attributes as we study and learn math. An emphasis on collaboration and mathematical mindsets at the start of the year will set the stage for a positive, collaborative, and open-minded math teaching/learning community.