Annie and Steve have hung their hats here, at their new site, Mathematical Thinking, under the aegis of 21PSTEM. We are focused on two projects (linked above) having to deal with the “practices” side of math education: (1) Virtual Math Teams, where folks can engage in live mathematical problem solving in small groups working together in Desmos or GeoGebra, and (2) EnCoMPASS, an environment for collaboratively reviewing student work and providing feedback. Both environments have been redeveloped since we left NCTM and are now being used, but they are also still being improved and bugs are being fixed daily. We are currently working on integration of the two projects so that educators and researchers can review VMT sessions in EnCoMPASS.
Virtual Math Teams features:
- Collaborative Desmos and GeoGebra (and soon Web Sketchpad)
- Live text chat that is coordinated with their work in Desmos and GeoGebra
- Replayer: The ability to experience and review the work of a group.
- Referencing: help others understand what you are chatting about by pointing to math objects or previous chat messages
- Organization: “Rooms” where collaborative activity takes place. “Courses” for bundling and sequencing Rooms for some group of folks. “Activities” are room templates for those situations where you want to set up a problem or mathematical scenario and then use this over and over again for different Rooms. “Community” where you can see lists of VMT resources (rooms, courses, activities): “public” for stuff you can use without asking and “private” requires permission from the facilitator. “Facilitators” can create and manage VMT resources. “Participants” can use VMT resources. Anyone who starts as a participant can choose to become a facilitator and create their own VMT resources.
- Create “Workspaces” where the review of student work is grounded in the data, focused on understanding student thinking.
- Use a Notice/Wonder framework for comments tied to specific selections of student work.
- Feedback: give feedback based on comments and selections, with the ability to reuse previous comments.
- Mentoring: set up, administer, and educate mentors to give effective feedback to students.
- Collaboration: The ability to share workspaces, comments and selections from student work, in order to design feedback and interventions, do professional development, and provide practical experiences for pre-service teachers.
- Upload student work saved as pdfs or photos, or have students submit work directly to problems available in EnCoMPASS.
- Problems database built from the community and the ability to assign problems to classes of students.