Sunday, October 11, 2009

Picky Sticky

Since Dean Watkins mentioned NetMath in her comments to the class and since this is a good and relevant read in its own right, here is an essay by Jerry Uhl, emeritus professor of mathematics and founder of NetMath, Why (and how) I teach without long lectures. Those who are in into Gladwell's The Tipping Point will especially enjoy the first paragraph in section 2, which gives Jerry's views of what sticks. Start with familiar examples, that's the way to establish conceptual understanding.

Recently I discovered (via a recommendation from a friend) an entire book on the point, Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die. The authors bill it as a sequel to the Tipping Point. Can't say I'd recommend reading the whole thing, but there are a few good take aways from it. (They explain the use of examples as leveraging what the audience already knows. Abstract explanations don't do that.)

When I was a kid, the cheater's version of books were called Cliff Notes. Now there's PowerPoint. This is the Made to Stick authors quickie version of their book. Perhaps it will suffice. It is useful for when you have to make a PowerPoint presentation.

No comments:

Post a Comment