Teachers share success stories and ideas that stimulate thinking about the effective use of technology in K–grade 6 classrooms. This article describes a set of lessons where sixth graders use virtual pattern blocks to develop proportional reasoning. Students' work with the virtual manipulatives reveals a variety of creative solutions and promotes active engagement. The author suggests that technology is most effective when coupled with worthwhile mathematical tasks and rich classroom discussions.
Katie L. Anderson, firstname.lastname@example.org, taught grades 3–6 math in the Alpine School District in American Fork, Utah, for ten years. She is currently a doctoral student in Mathematics Education and Leadership at Utah State University's Emma Eccles Jones College of Education and Human Services, where she teaches elementary mathematics methods courses. She is interested in helping teachers effectively incorporate virtual manipulatives and classroom discourse into their instruction.
Edited by Spencer Jamieson, Spencer.email@example.com, a math resource teacher for the Instructional Services Department of Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) in Virginia; Patricia W. Freeman, firstname.lastname@example.org, who teaches algebra 1 and geometry to eighth graders at Franklin Middle School in Chantilly, Virginia, while pursuing a doctorate in Mathematics Education Leadership at George Mason University (GMU); and Courtney Baker, email@example.com, who is a math consultant for FCPS and a GMU doctoral student. Technology from the Classroom is a venue to share articles that illustrate the effective use of technology in pre-K–grade 6 math classrooms. Send submissions of no more than 1500 words by accessing tcm.msubmit.net. See detailed submission guidelines for all departments at www.nctm.org/tcmdepartments.