In this workshop, we’ll look at numerous ways that Google Apps can support student-centered activities in math and science classrooms. Having more and more access to technology in our classrooms means students now have access to powerful tools for doing science and math like Google Sheets for analyzing data and the g(Math) extension for reporting their findings. Teachers can check for understanding with tools like Google Forms or Kahoot. These quick formative assessments give us a snapshot of how well our students are understanding the content and guide our instruction moving forward. Come to this session to explore ways to get students actively learning and exploring math and science concepts using Google Apps (and more) AND to think about ways you can use these tools for formative assessments.
MS and HS science and math teachers
Fun fact: “The statistics (perhaps ironically) are pretty convincing. Summarized in an article at Datanami, McKinsey says that by 2018, the demand for data scientists will outpace supply by 60%. Accenture noted that 90% of its clients were looking for data talent, and 40% cited a lack of it as a major problem. And to top it off, Glassdoor found that the median starting salary for a data scientist can be almost double that of a programmer. Everybody’s looking to hire and pay (well) for data people, but they can’t seem to find them.”
Part 1 - What story does your data tell
Part 1 – What story does your data tell
- Open this spreadsheet so you can watch the data come in.
- Fill out this form.
- Wait until people are finished filling out the form, then click here to make a copy of the spreadsheet and look through how I set it up.
- Are there any other questions you could ask about this data and find an answer with some spreadsheet analysis?
- How could you use an activity like this in your class?
Part 2 - Matchstick Data Activity
Part 2 – Matchstick Data Activity
Data and Statistics is part of the Common Core Standards for all age levels. Whether you are collecting time and position data as part of a physics experiment or what drinks people like for breakfast as part of the social sciences, spreadsheets can help your students analyze their findings.
(The following activity was created by my friend, Chris Betcher.)
- Get into a group of no more than 6 people (4 to 6 is ideal)
- Nominate ONE person to be the group leader. Just one!
- The group leader needs to make a copy of this Google Sheet (this link will prompt you to make a copy)
- Group leader then shares their copy of the Sheet with the rest of their group.
- Find the shared Sheet in your Google Drive and open it. You’re now all working as a team on the same Sheet.
- Open your bag of coloured matchsticks and roughly divide them between everyone in the group.
- Count your own little pile of matches and enter the data into the shared Sheet. Don’t forget to enter your names in Column B.
- Be careful not to change a cell that shouldn’t be changed. (If you try to, you’ll get a warning about it)
- Once the raw data is entered, you’ll need to use Spreadsheet formulas to calculate the missing numbers. The formulas you’ll need to use are SUM, AVERAGE, MAX, MIN. Remember that all formulas start with an = sign.
- Fill the formulas across and down so that every required cell has relevant data in it. (Rows 11, 12, 13, 14, and Column I) Let everyone have a chance at creating a formula.
Stop here and wait for instructions.
- Once you’ve filled in the whole sheet as a team, you need to make your own copy of the data. Use the File > Make a Copy command.
- Now you’re on your own, kid! This new Sheet belongs to you.
- Make a stacked column chart (graph) to show the total number of matchsticks counted by each person.
- Tidy up your chart with appropriate labels, etc
- Check the colours in the chart. Do they match the correct colour names? How can you fix that?
- Once you’re happy with the final chart, move it to its own sheet. Your chart will look something like this.
- Make a copy of this document and answer the questions.
- You’re done!
Part 3 - Classroom applications
Part 3 – Classroom applications
How could you use this idea of data collection with your students? Not necessarily by counting matchsticks – that was just an example – but how could collecting and analysing data fit into what you do in your classroom? (Discuss in your group.)
Let’s think about other uses of Google Apps in math and science.