Computational Modelling Resources Report

Ontario TechU: STEAM-3D Maker Lab

To assist with the school closures due to the pandemic, Dr. Hughes through STEAM-3D Maker Lab begun offering free weekly sessions (synchronous or asynchronous, depending on board guidelines) for teachers and their classes. The sessions were co-developed with teachers to provide engaging, interdisciplinary, hands-on learning activities. There were 19 Math & Coding online sessions for teachers and students, with a total of 400 participants (200 students, 160 teachers, 15 math leads and 30 administrative staff).

STEAM3D Lab’s March Break Camp planning included Dr. Hughes meeting with teachers from TDSB, members of the NASA/FNMIEAO group and DDSB Indigenous leads for a co-learning session weekend in June and August.

Finally, Dr. Hughes and her team will be producing short, educational videos on the use of various digital tools and resources. Designed to assist teachers and parents, each video will feature a brief introduction to the tool, as well as ideas for integration with mathematics and other curricular subject areas.

Brock University 

At Brock, the main overall project was to engage 19 Brock pre-service teachers to design eight Ontario Grade 9 math + Python guided worksheets (and related teacher resources). Niagara Catholic DSB teachers were not involved in this endeavor as this took place during the pandemic confinement when teachers were exceptionally busy providing online teaching and support to their students.

With the assistance of George Gadanidis, Brock CoP lead Chantal Buteau also launched an international Online Seminar Series on Programming in Mathematics Education that aimed at providing a platform to discuss recent research on the integration and use of programming (or computational modelling) in mathematics programs, including research topics addressing: related student learning, the nature of exemplary tasks,  pedagogical models, etc. Six seminars with international speakers were hosted from June to August with internationally renowned speakers such as:

  • Celia Hoyles & Richard Noss, University College London, UK
  • Krista Francis & Brent Davis, University of Calgary, Canada
  • Michelle Wilkerson & Edward Rivero, University of California, Berkeley, USA
  • Chronis Kynigos, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece
  • Ricardo Scucuglia: São Paulo State University, Brazil
  • Paul Drijvers, Utrecht University, Netherlands

The targeted audience was ½ academics, 1/4 math education students, and 1/4 elementary and high school teachers and leaders. Approximately 270 participants registered from 28 countries, closely reflecting the targeted audience of academics, math education students and elementary and high school teachers and leaders. A Brock pre-service teacher implemented the ScratchMaths program with a two Grade 6 classes, through virtual teaching, over a period of 8 weeks.

The Online Seminar Series page on the website had a total of 1,761 visits.

St. Andrew’s PS

St. Andrew’s PS brought the Microbit activities learned at the Ontario Tech U. STEAM3D Lab collaborative sessions to additional classrooms in the school. as the CoP partnered with other classes in the school, taught them what they had learned and allowed them to use the purchased Mircobit kits to spread the knowledge. Teachers who attended the Ontario Tech U. STEAM3D Lab sessions held mini PD’s on how to use the Microbits and to how it could be applicable in their daily teaching and integrated with the various subjects.

STEAM3D Lab created lesson plans that were shared on the Lab Google Drive. Parts of these lessons were used in the sessions ran for teachers and students during early 2020.

Wellington Catholic DSB

Throughout the year, George Gadanidis and CoP lead Jeff Cummings have also been working with math teachers at St. James Catholic High School in the Wellington Catholic DSB developing computation modelling resources in social studies and mathematics.

The Computational Modelling page on the website had a total of 756 visits.