On the Shoulders of Giants

I see it is now 16 months and 92 posts since I started this blog! I hope I have made a small humble contribution to the Maths blogosphere? As my teaching career nears its end, I realize that I have had some great “gurus” to help me become a better Maths teacher. Like NEWTON I have been able “to stand on the shoulders of giants”.

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My first Gurus were Maths teachers: Bob Guest and Ron D’Elloro, who set me on the path. Then at Teachers’ College my Maths Method lecturer: Bob Hayes, helped me to see the beauty of Mathematics and want to learn its magnificent history. At my first 2 schools I had Rick Blomberg, Bruce Mellington and Keith Gray, who modeled what competent, dedicated Maths teachers were like. Then during my teaching career, Charles Lovitt led me to develop a strong belief that Maths should be hands on, constructivist, and investigative.

At my present school, I had the priviledge to have Gary Golding as Principal. He showed me what a great leader should be, how to truly care and look after their staff.

Then along came Warren Snow. A great Maths teacher who loved a challenge. I repeatedly gave him challenging Maths problems to solve and he usually had a solution in quick time. He would say “trivial” which I took as meaning “find me a harder problem more worthy of my ability”.

A big THANK YOU to my past Gurus.

In the last 16 months I now find that I have new Math Gurus. They come from far away places. I have not met them personally, but I feel like I know them well. I read their writing weekly in my rss reader. They inspire me. They give me new teaching ideas.

One such “Guru” is Dan Meyer, who just happens to have the same surname as my Grandmother. His WCYDWT posts are challenging teachers to think about the way they teach. Thank you DAN for your contributions to teaching and also to the many other Maths bloggers I follow in my Reader.

PS. In my next few posts, I am going to try a few WCYDWT’s and Show & Tell’s, AKA Dan Meyer. I must admit I’m a bit apprehensive!?!

About webmaths

I have been teaching Mathematics in Victorian secondary schools for 30 years. I use the www to make my maths lessons better. I hope this blog will give other teachers some ideas to try in their own classes.
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3 Responses to On the Shoulders of Giants

  1. Dan Meyer says:

    Looking forward to it, Jeff.

    Something I think I’ve lost in all the technical weeds of WCYDWT is that this is very much an expression of what you enjoy mathematically. Tell a story about math you’ve seen, pondered, and enjoyed. There are certain storytelling techniques that allow others to share your same joy of discovery and others that don’t, but we can develop those over time.

  2. Ed Parker says:

    Greetings from North Central Washington State.
    Found your site through dy/dan and will be checking back to see how the Bento box designs work out. I have only recently discovered these great conversations going on inside my computer without my knowledge, but from now on I’m paying attention! And I’m coming back to steal ideas.

  3. webmaths says:

    Hi Ed, Good to make contact. Would love to get to Washington one day – from what I’ve read it is an amazing place. Feel free to grab any ideas, worksheets, etc – you are welcome. I highly recommend using Google Reader and adding any good Math blogs you come across. Cheers, Jeff.

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