Thursday, September 30, 2010


Of all the lesson that we had, this lesson is the most confusing of  all for me, as Geometry is one of the killer in my 'O' level. I always fine it very abstract to remember the angles in pentagon, and in many other shapes. Today's lesson is another eye-opener for me, I was introduced to the function of a tangram. Before this lesson, the set of tangram in my classroom was place in the manipulative centre where children could use it to create picture or diagram during their learning centre time.

This was something created by the K2 children while they are at the manipulative centre.

Today, I know how I could use this in the math centre where it could extend children's learning.
Something for me to take away from today lesson is the different between a square and a rhombus.
I would definitely remember that lines that appears to be equal need not be equal and also a rhombus. I thought the sukudo game was fun!

My view on the sequence of place value

In my personal point of view, I would introduce the following when teaching place value.

a) number in numeral
    First of all, I would introduced number in numeral to the children. (1, 2, 3, ... 12, 13, 14,... 21 etc)
    Teacher could use concrete materials to show children the number that he or she is teaching, for example to show 10 pencils when teaching children the numeral 10 and so on.
b) place value chart representation
    With the aid of the place value chart, show children the tens and ones column. highlighting to the children
    that a bundle of sticks in the picture represents 10 and the loose sticks represent ones.
c) number in tens and ones
    Having shown the children the place value chart, introduced numbers in tens and ones to the children. Help
    children understand that in the number 48, there are 4 tens and 8 ones.
d) expended notation
    Following which, teacher could introduced expended notation to the children. eg, 98, 100, 110 etc.
e) number in words
    Finally, teacher could introduced the abstract part, which I felt that it is number in word. 100 is One
    hundred etc.

Incorporating technology into the pre-school curriculum

Technology is something that we encounter and work with in our daily life. Computers, mobile phones for an instant are items which we use almost daily. I have a little cousin who is three years old and you will always come running after me for games in my I-pod touch. I downloaded a few applications which could teach her phonics in a fun and captivating way. Applications which could teach math concepts could be downloaded as well. I downloaded some, thinking that my cousin could be exposed to math concept while she’s playing.

While reading chapter 7 of the text, I thought why couldn’t we incorporate technology into the math curriculum in my school for the pre-schoolers? As I read on, I was surprised that calculator could be introduced to pre-schoolers. If I did not remember wrongly, I was only introduced to use calculator in my secondary school days. The main purposed of using the calculator during math lesson was to solve equations on sin, cos, tan etc. Not forgetting, to add and subtract during accounts lesson too. These days, pre-schoolers are actually using it. This was really something that catches my attention, and I believe that it is worth trying in local pre schools.

Of the few websites which I visited, this is the site which I like most. Do pay a visit to the site. =)

Reflection of the module

It would be hard to choose something that impressed me in this module, as almost each and every single lesson is an eye-opener for me. This module provides me the platform to view math in a different perspective. Whenever I encounter anything that had to do with mathematics, the 4Ms always pop up in my mind “Math Makes Me Mad!”

The first lesson that we had was a turning point for me, having go through the desired outcomes or objectives of mathematics in our curriculum framework really “wow” me. Follow by the various friends that we introduced throughout the lesson, Jerome Bruner is one of the many friends which I will remember. His CPA approach is something that I could use in many other subjects apart from mathematics.

One other important thing that I will take with me when I plan math lessons for my K2 students is the three big ideas

1) Visualization
2) Number Sense
3) Pattern

Having gone through the lessons with Dr Yeap, highlighted to me that math does not always makes me mad, in fact, it could be something magical. It really depends on how creative the teacher who delivers the lesson is. It is a very thin line between math that drives people mad and math that are magical. It is the teachers' choice if they want their students to grow up thinking that math makes them mad or math is magical.

To all the mathematics teachers out there, take your pick now!

Reflection of environmental task

I felt that problem solving is a skill which must be acquired since that day that we are born. Personally I felt that problem solving cannot be taught, it is a skill that gets better as we practice and grows. When told that we would be allocated some time to conduct a lesson study, I was overjoyed as I love learning outside the classroom.

My group has chosen to embark on the concept of measurement using non-standard units and our targeted age group of children is 6 years old. The venue that we will be choosing will be the Singapore Arts Museum. It was fun anticipating what the children would ask during the visit.

Prior to the visit of the museum, children will exposed to various learning experiences to measure objects such as white board, tables, chairs, book, etc in class with string, paper clips, wooden chopstick and so on.

Teacher will bring the children to the Singapore Arts Museum or any other location where the children could explore with non-standard measurement with the use of any materials that they could find at the venue. Teacher could prompt the children to use their body parts to measure as well.

Do visit the following link to read more on Polya’s model. =)

It was fun to have a lesson study like this; I had never thought doing it prior to this module. After the great experience from this lesson, I would definitely introduce lesson study to my fellow colleagues.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Whole number and common practices in local pre-school

Having read through the few chapters that talk about number sense, I felt that the local pre-schools need to relook their math curriculum as there are a few important topics which the children should be exposed.

The common practice in local pre-school emphasize in counting 1-5 for the nursery one; 1-20 for the nursery two; 1-100 for the kindergarten 1s and 2s. Patterning and simple geometry are something that were in practice as well. For the kindergarten 2s, topics such as time and money are included into the curriculum to prepare them for primary school education. Personally I felt that the time allocated for the topic of time and money is too short.

Some of the practice that are ommited from the pre-school math curriculum are doubles as well as the aid of calculators and also anchoring of numbers. In the school which I works in, fraction and division was not in sight at all.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

1st lesson

Happy Teachers' Day to all the teachers out there!

Yup, it's teachers' day and I am scheduled to attend lesson today! But it was fun though, my perspective changed towards my view of Mathematic. Mathematic was not as scary and mad as I thought it was before. Rather, having to opportunity to visit the objectives of teaching Mathematics set by the Ministry of Education as well as the interesting tricks I get to experience today, I thought Mathematic is not that scary and meaningless after all.

The games or rather tricks we had in class today were an eye-opener to me! I am going to try with my class tomorrow. I never taught that Math could be so much fun and excitement. I like the spell card trick and the dice trick. I believe my students would be as amazed as I do when I show them the trick tomorrow.

Something for me to bring home from today's lesson is that "We must be excited over everything, otherwise we're disabled!"

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Pre-course reading (Chapter 2)

Having read through Chapter 2, I am determined to revamp my teaching style in class. As mentioned in the textbook that a classroom environment does somehow or rather impact the learning of the children.

I felt that it is time for me to change my teaching style to make learning math fun for the children, instead of me teaching the children the concept I wanted them to learn through teaching aids.

I felt that I need to provide the opportunity for the children to post questions and also to ask open ended questions to get the children thinking and construct their own understanding of the concept instead of me telling them the concepts and giving our activity sheet thereafter to gauge their understanding of the topic (Which was the way I was taught when I was young)

I believe that an enriching and welcoming learning environment is essential for learners in whichever subject they are learning.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Pre-course reading (Chapter 1)

The moment I receive the course module from the school, I was like... "Oh, Math! Will I ever make it for this module?" After reading Chapter 1, I felt that I can really identify with the teaching principle under the 6 principles and standards for school Mathematics.

I felt that the teaching principle is very important as I believe that a teacher really makes a different in a child's life. Not only does a teacher need to understand what he or she is teaching, they too need to be creative in their teaching styles or methods in order to draw the learner's (student) attention and interest in what they are teaching.

It's a curse that since primary school that I never do well in Mathematics. Since primary five, I have no idea of what the teacher is teaching me. Primary five is the year of turning point for my attitude towards Math. I can clearly remembered how Mr Tham looked like, and the exact words which he used to swear at our class (Bas*&^d, Idi#t, Sh%t). If my parents were educated back then, he would be on the headlines! That very year was the year where my Mathematic grades falls towards single digit in my entire life. That was how bad it was.

Moving on to Secondary school, Mathematics was a subject that I drag attending. All those formulars that the teacher made us memoried were meaningless to me, I remembered them for the sake of remembering. I thought that I was allergied to numbers, ironically I did well for my Principle of Accounts. Hence, I thought, I'm not that bad with numbers though.

Looking back, I believe that it is the different approach the teachers used. I am really grateful to Ms You who taught me Principle of Accounts with her creative ways and not just drilling and practising.

To sum up, I felt that this particular principle not only applies to Mathematics, it apply to any topic or subjects a teacher teaches. Let's all reflect in our teaching and get creative with our teaching to make an impact in our student's learning.