MATHEMATICS FOR THE TALENTED ONES AS WELL AS THE OTHERS

TitleMATHEMATICS FOR THE TALENTED ONES AS WELL AS THE OTHERS
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsNovák, B, Molnár, J, Švrček, J
JournalProblems of Education in the 21st Century
Volume2
Start Page59-66
Date PublishedSeptember/2007
Type of ArticleOriginal article
ISSN1822-7864
Other NumbersICID: 507005
Keywordsmathematical competitions, motivational activities, teaching mathematics
Abstract

The results of a broadly-conceived research carried out in the Czech Republic in 2006 have shown that Math and Science do not belong to favorite subjects at secondary schools. The problem does not reside in Math itself, but in the personal reflection of the experiences from Math teaching. Mathematical competitions, unusual problem solving, games, projects and other motivational activities might provide an opportunity to change the attitude toward Math as a school subject. The confidence of what has just been said has brought the scientific team of the Palacký University in Olomouc to solving a grant of the Czech Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports. Within the grant the team has been seeking and verifying new methods and forms of competitions focusing on creative activities of youth in Math. The research activities can be divided into three areas:
New forms of work with mathematically gifted pupils (Jaroslav Švrček) aimed at preparing and implementing mathematical competitions in the Czech secondary schools environment. International mathematical competitions such as “Mathematical Duel” or “Middle European Mathematical Olympiad” present the chances to compare mathematical knowledge of talented pupils of Middle-European countries. “The Tournament of Towns” is even more widely conceived. Students solve the same problems (two times in the year) in their mother tongues of the cities of participating countries (Praha, Brno, Olomouc and Bílovec are the only towns in the Czech Republic – participation will be offered to all Czech cities next year).
The experience from organizing and didactic use of problems from the internationally-coordinated competition “Mathematical Kangaroo” is used for preparing, creating and advertising its new modification called “Sciences Kangaroo” (Josef Molnár). The nature of the competition as well as the target group (i.e. the “ordinary” elementary and secondary school pupils) remains the same. The tasks fall into the area of Natural Sciences, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Geography, and Ecology. Their motivational features are stressed as this makes seeing the subject matter more interesting.
The third part, called “Playful Mathematics” (Bohumil Novák), focuses on preparing, creating and supporting a research in the educational efficiency of various mathematical activities in the elementary school environment: class, individual or staged competitions, games or integrated school projects which – following the constructivist approaches – aim at getting to know Mathematics. Reflection of the participants’ view is very important in this respect – the participants are welcome to subsequently give their comments on both the content and the form of the event.

URLhttp://oaji.net/articles/2014/457-1392220135.pdf
Refereed DesignationRefereed
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