I spent last week at the AP Calculus Summer Institute in Vancouver, WA. I took the AP Calculus AB (experienced) session with instructor Sharon Cade. I was glad to have her as an instructor again; I took a week-long workshop from her a few years ago at PLU and learned so much. I gained a lot of insight during this session into the reading and scoring of the AP exam which will definitely help me better prepare my students next year. Besides the calculus, I also love her team-building activities and definitely plan to use them this year. I think they get kids in the right frame of mind, and they are fun. I know I learn more if I’m having a little fun. 🙂 The experienced session was also great because I got great ideas for lessons and incorporating technology from the other teachers in my session.
Here are a few math and tech highlights from the week:
- We worked with programs for the TI-83/84 and TI-89 graphing calculators. I especially liked the programs in Work Smarter, Not Harder by Venture Publishing, available for the TI-83/84 and the TI-89. More programs can be found at the TI Download Center and at http://www.ticalc.org .
- A fantastic FREE graphing program is Winplot. You’ll find this and other free software on the Peanuts Software Homepage at Phillips Exeter Academy. Did I mention that it’s FREE? Free is good. 🙂
- For those who use Geometer Sketchpad 4, a great resource is the Calculus In Motion by Audrey Weeks.
- TI conducted a session on the new TI-Nspire which was interesting. We also received CDs for a 30-day trial of TI SmartView. I am currently using Virtual TI (another freebie) and will continue using it since I have the TI-89 rather than the 83/84, but the advantage of SmartView is that it records your key strokes which is a definite bonus when a kid gets 3 steps behind. If they create SmartView for the 89, I’ll be first in line.
- We looked at some great resources from Stu Schwartz at http://www.mastermathmentor.com/ including his Clue game. I like games. 🙂
- I like to use some of the activities from A Watched Cup Never Cools by Key Curriculum Press.
- Sharon shared OES’s curriculum map for AP Calculus AB. You can also view curriculum maps for other courses at OES here.
- For students that need tutoring, consider http://www.aleks.com .
- We looked at lots of calculus questions. Here are some sites we looked at as well as some from Sharon’s resource list and others that I personally use:
- If you want a class website that is easy to build and maintain, consider www.eboard.com . I have used eBoard for the past two years and found it to be extremely easy to use, although now my site is hosted by our district. Thanks to Wendy Droke for showing us around her own eBoard.