Month: September 2011

Should you cite Wikipedia?
The short answer is no, but I think that Wikipedia is an excellent first stop on your way to find better sources. Move towards the source: Ideally you should cite primary and secondary sources in your work, but Wikipedia might be considered tertiary or even more remote. However, most Wikipedia entries are compiled by knowledgeable […]

How to Have a Conversation
One of my favorite sketches in the Monty Python film, The Meaning of Life, is of a middleaged couple (completely lacking any intellectual curiosity) who have an awkward and scripted conversation. The waiter tries to interest them in conversations about minorities, football, baseball, and finally manages to start them on a conversation about philosophy. You […]

Welcome to the Bard MAT Neighborhood
One of the many special things about the Bard MAT Program is just how much time students spend out in the schools, allowing for a gentle development of their skills and understandings as teachers. Now that September is nearing an end, the MAT students will soon scatter around the neighborhood, to the nearby classrooms at […]

Bard Math Festival Resources
One of my greatest accomplishments in the 20102011 school year was to organize the Bard Math Festival and the Pi Day Celebration with my MAT math students and my colleague Ben BlumSmith. Each of the MAT students (we call them “candidates”) selected several possible math activities, and an ongoing activity over each quarter was refining […]

Fall 2011 Math Teaching Lab
I’m preparing for the fall math teaching lab, which starts on Wednesday, September 7th. Last year, I cotaught this class with my colleague Ben BlumSmith, and we planned the course on the belief that mathematical problem solving is the heart of mathematics. The guiding questions we used were What’s Motivating about doing Mathematics? How do […]