Changing the Culture 2003: Do we need to teach Algebra?

  • Date: 05/02/2003
Speaker(s):

Bernice Kastner, Towson University, Maryland and the Rochester Institute of Technology
Lorraine Baron, Mount Boucherie Secondary School, Kelowna
Wayne Matthews, Camosun College, Victoria
Kanwal Neel, Steveston Secondary, Richmond
Brian Wetton, UBC
Peter Liljedahl, Faculty of Education, SFU,
Rina Zazkis, Faculty of Education, SFU,

Location: 

SFU

Topic: 

The 6th Annual Changing the Culture Conference, organized and sponsored
by the Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences, will again
bring together mathematicians, mathematics educators and school
teachers from all levels to work together towards narrowing the gap
between mathematicians and teachers of mathematics, and between those
who do and enjoy mathematics and those who don't believe they could.

This year's conference will focus on transitions from secondary to post-secondary mathematics classrooms. What are the issues?

People teaching first year courses at universities and colleges feel
that students are not prepared for the experience. Parents are looking
for tutors for their children, concerned about their chances at passing
UBC (SFU, UVic, ...) calculus course. Does the new curriculum prepare
students for the university/college experience? Or, is it that the high
school curricula have been changing faster than the university calculus
courses, and the students arrive not knowing enough about algebra to
satisfy university expectations? Are these expectations realistic?

Do we need to teach Algebra? What Algebra? For Whom?

These are just some of the questions this year's Changing the Culture conference will attempt to answer.

Schedule:

8:30 Registration

 

9:00 Opening Remarks TBA

 

9:15-10:15 Keynote Lecture The Language of Mathematics
Bernice Kastner, Towson University, Maryland and the Rochester Institute of Technology
Abstract: Technology has had a great impact on high school mathematics curricula, providing tools to help students build intuition through visualization among other benefits. Have such gains been accompanied by a loss in the ability to "speak the language of mathematics" - algebra?

 

10:15-10:45 Coffee break

 

10:45-12:00 Workshops and Discussions

 

12:00-13:00 Lunch

 

13:00-14:30 Panel Discussion:
Lorraine Baron, Mount Boucherie Secondary School, Kelowna
Wayne Matthews, Camosun College, Victoria
Kanwal Neel, Steveston Secondary, Richmond
Brian Wetton, UBC

 

14:30-15:45 Workshops and Discussions

 

15:45-16:00 Coffee break

 

16:00-17:00 Public Lecture Hollywood Perceptions of Mathematics: Cultural Truth or Mathematical Fiction?
Rina Zazkis and Peter Liljedahl, Faculty of Education, SFU,
Abstract: We live in a society that has infinite tolerance for innumeracy. It is accepted (and even expected) that our children are going to struggle with mathematics. It has become a cultural norm. Hollywood doesn't help. Its portrayal of mathematics and mathematical activity serves only to malign public perception. But is it creating the image or merely representing it? In this plenary we will use movie excerpts to examine the question of what mathematics do people really know (or don't know).
Workshops
1. Helping Students Learn Calculus using Problem Solving Workshops,
Joanne Nakonechny, Roger Donaldson, UBC
2. Can Algebra be made Lively?
Malgorzata Dubiel, SFU, Klaus Hoechsmann, UBC
3. Roots and Routes to Algebra
Peter Liljedahl, SFU

Other Information: hide

Previous Changing the Culture Conferences

 

2002
2001
2000
1999
1998