Today in Grade 9 Applied Mathematics, we had a full class (75 minutes) to work on our Ratio project. Students were either creating scale drawings, creating a scale model for the 3D printer or creating a scale model in Minecraft.
Other than a few little mishaps like some student-caused flooding in Minecraft and the yours truly being blocked in a cave in by some students who knew I couldn’t figure my way out, students did really well at staying on task today (grin).
Many students taught themselves how to use Tinkercad to make their 3D models and created their entire model. We taught no lessons on Tinkercad nor Minecraft. Students were pretty much on their own and had to rely on each other. They were great at sharing tips and tricks they found. Myself and Ms. LaChapelle let the class know when a student figured something out, so others could learn from them. We sat down beside students and learned with them.
I was worried that this project would take way beyond 3 periods, or that we’d lose sight of the math expectations. Part way through the period I couldn’t see any progress in a students’ Minecraft work area, so I asked him what he was up to. He replied that he had been building his skate park underground. I had no idea how to get there, or how he did that so he showed me. I caught it on video and asked him some ratio questions while I could – just to see if we were thinking in terms of “proportional reasoning”. Tomorrow I’ll really get to see when students set up their ratios using the iPads and Explain Everything. Here is a quick video of him showing off his skate park. He got stalled on some basic multiplication facts in his head as I put him on the spot, but he definitely understands the idea of ratio. This activity has provided multiple entry points and the ability for students to use ratios that are easier or more difficult to work with.
Below is a 7-minute, rambly video about our activity and sharing some of our student creations. I literally just hit record and started exploring what they had created. Far from a polished video, but I wanted to archive the process.