"There is no one way"

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

More Algebra Book Fan Mail

I have some good news for the users of the online version of Algebra: Themes, Tools, Concepts (ATTC, the textbook I co-authored with Anita Wah): all the ATTC PDFs are now searchable, and many of the files are smaller than they used to be. (See below for links.)

Amanda Cangelosi, a Mathematics instructor at the University of Utah, writes:
For the past decade, I have been incorporating Wah and Picciotto's Algebra: Themes, Tools, Concepts in my mathematics classrooms at the middle, high school, and undergraduate levels.  As a middle and high school teacher, I found ATTC lessons engaged my students not only because the content is presented in an appetizing context utilizing intelligent representations, but also because the text is written with language that unleashes students' latent abilities.  Many texts have an unintended patronizing tone;  in contrast, ATTC speaks to secondary students with a respectful and inclusive voice, which invites students to learn in a highly effective way. Carefully balancing direct instruction with genuine discovery, ATTC gets students to do mathematics as opposed to just carrying out memorized procedures. 
In my undergraduate university courses (Utah State University and University of Utah Intermediate Algebra and College Algebra, 2006-2013), ATTC offered a fresh approach to old concepts that my students had previously chronically misunderstood (e.g., visually factoring algebraic expressions and completing the square; function diagrams; simplifying radicals).  I used exclusively ATTC materials (Chapters 1-3, 5, 7, 8, 13) to teach my Algebra for Elementary Teachers course at the University of Utah, for which I received overwhelmingly positive student feedback, most accolades referring to the role of Lab Gear in shedding light on algebraic concepts. 
I teach various Math Education courses to preservice and in-service teachers, and I consistently use ATTC activities to demonstrate methods of teaching secondary content that meet the Common Core State Standards, as well as enhancing teachers' knowledge by taking advantage of the many opportunities for enrichment that ATTC has to offer, such as topics in number theory (e.g., "The McNuggets Problem") and group theory (e.g., "Math on Another Planet").
Thanks, Amanda!

A launch page for the book, its chapters, its lessons, its teacher's edition, and other support materials is here.
If you want an introduction to the book and some sample lessons, click here.
For the book's curriculum model, see this image.
And for more ATTC fan mail, including its compatibility with the Common Core, see this post.

 --Henri

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