Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Math Books and Links

I've worked with a number of math teachers who have text rich classrooms. They decorate the walls and room with a large variety of print resources and have books all over the room. This isn't necessarily always the case, but I am pleasantly surprised on a regular basis. Following are some resources I regularly recommend to math teachers.

Nature by Numbers: A video by Cristobel Vila, 2010.
The Fibonacci sequence has been a subject of fascination to mathematicians, artists, and the rest of us for a very long time. Cristobel is a quite famous artist who has done a variety of really famous installations around the world. I have an entire collection of materials on the Fibonacci sequence that this video is joining. The video is a great way to begin your day--it highlights the poetry of mathematics in nature.

The Librarian Who Measured the Earth, by Kathryn Lasky & Kevin Hawkes
This elegant picture book is something that should be in almost every math classroom. It's not only a book for elementary schools, although many folks believe picture books should stop appearing after 5th grade. Lasky tells the story of Eratosthenes who through careful observation and excellent calculations devised a way to measure the earth. It doesn't take long to read this short book and is well worth the time. It will convince many of your resistant math students that there is a possibility that they will use all this math "in the real world."

Math Curse, by Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith
Jon Schieszka is a "perverse" writer who specializes in book that provide new perspectives on common themes. Among some of his more famous picture books are The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs, The Stinky Cheese man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales, and The Time Warp Trio series. Math Curse is another picture book that I believe belongs in every math classroom. It will take only a few minutes to read and provides yet another answer to "When are we going to use this?" Lane Smith's collage art is a rich addition to the book. Each page is a visual treat in a style that many adolescents find compelling.

Blogs by other math teachers include: http://textoteria.blogspot.com/ (Irene Wagner)

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