Learning mathematics through creativity is a not an approach we often associate with junior high school classrooms. In this post, Jessica Simons, Math teacher and co-researcher on the VR School Study, explains how she went about designing curriculum that allowed her Year 9 extension mathematics class to use 360-degree virtual reality to demonstrate their depth of understanding of linear and non linear graphs.
Jessica developed a unit of work which scaffolded students towards growing their mathematical knowledge and applying this to the environment of their school. Students were asked to produce imaginative 360-degree virtual worlds that could be used to teach their peers about graphs. Working in small groups, students scouted locations around their school where graphs might be represented and then they planned and storyboarded their ideas to produce original immersive adventures in mathematics to share with others. The cover image for this blog post is of an initial brainstorm from one group on the VR task.
The unit of work can be found here.
The video below is of Jessica explaining how she developed the curriculum, bought a creative lens to mathematics teaching, and the value-add of VR to student learning.
This post bought to you by real live educators A/Prof Erica Southgate and Jessica Simons (Assistant Head of Mathematics, Trinity College, Adelaide).